real rest

I can see him. Sleeping in bed. His little body curled up and his hands tucked close to his face. There’s the sweet sound of breathing — in and out — as his body rests.

I want to pick him up. Hold him.

Yet, I know, that will wake him up. So I stand there watching him, marveling at the beauty that can be found in a toddler fast asleep. I stand there, in the room, the room still littered with little toys around and books crooked on the shelf, and I bask in the moment.

I really don’t see those toys. I don’t see the little people that got put in the lego box or the books that are under the crib or the stuffed animals resting in the middle of the floor. I don’t see the laundry basket full of clothes to put away or the pile of laundry waiting by the door to be brought down to the laundry room. The marker on the wall fades into the night, and the stain on the carpet disappears.

I’m in the room with my baby.

I want to sleep like him. Peaceful. Unaware of the messes around him yet secure to sleep, to rest, to feel safe. So often I fall prey to seeing all that is wrong and needs to be fixed or I have yet to do. I scurry here or there and race through life only to go to bed exhausted with a mind that won’t rest.

Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7

I look again and remember. I remember the moments earlier in the day where he sat in my arms and we read page after page after page in the same book that we always read. His sweet little body nestled in my lap as I encouraged him to “find the duck” and turn the pages. Oh, how he just wanted to be with me. To spend time with me. To rest.

No wonder Jesus talked about the faith of children so often. I look at my Samuel, and I look at how he feels safe and secure, and how he wants to spend time with me and sit in my lap, and how he sleeps and doesn’t see the unimportant — and I realize — that is a picture of how we are to come to the Lord everyday. Instead, if you’re like me, we  tend to come with our stuff, our earthly agendas, and we rush through our prayers — and don’t really rest.

He wants us to sit with Him.

To slow down. To rest deep. To feel safe. To let go of the things of this world.

Watch your children. Watch how they want to be with you, and how they are eager to sit in your lap, and how peacefully they sleep at night. And then pray that you may have that same heart with your Father in Heaven.

Rest. In Him.

Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His glory and grace.


8 Responses to real rest
  1. Sara
    November 6, 2011 | 7:54 pm

    I do this “Watching over” with my 3 1/2 yr old son as he sleeps and everything you said is so true. How you want to pick them up and how peaceful they look. They are such angels aren’t they? Yes a true gift from our Beautiful Creator.

    Thanks you for your words Rachel:):):)

    • rachel
      November 7, 2011 | 9:02 am

      Thank you for your kind words in return. I think it’s important for us parents to watch them sleep — we can learn from that — and recharge ourselves for the next morning as they run around like crazy!

      Blessings to you.

  2. Kimberly
    November 6, 2011 | 11:12 pm

    As always…beautiful.

    This has been my word for this year. The things I so need to work on. Rest. I am definitely one to look at all of the mess around me and fret and worry and forget to simply rest. To simply be with Him.

    Thank you for this beautiful picture today. I love how you share His heart.

    • rachel
      November 7, 2011 | 9:06 am

      It is true — it’s hard to intentionally rest. So often it’s my children that remind me to slow down.

      Thanks for your kind comment. 🙂

  3. Carissa
    November 7, 2011 | 8:57 am

    This was the most perfect and beautiful analogy. Love it and you. Thank you. My spirit needed the reminder.

    • rachel
      November 7, 2011 | 9:08 am

      You’re welcome, Carissa. God is good — He knows what we need to hear and when we need to.

      His blessings on you today!

  4. hippie4ever
    November 13, 2011 | 10:08 am

    This is an absolutely beautiful analogy. Thank you.

  5. Laura
    November 16, 2011 | 11:46 pm

    I liked this very much. Thank you for sharing your heart, Rachel. I’ve often thought about how accepting children are and how uninhibited. Amazing what adulthood does to that. Oh to be more like a child.