Beloved - Part 3 by Natalie McGehee
Rest. Rest is a really good word. It may sound a little strange, but just reading the word makes me breathe a little deeper and pause for just a moment. A moment to rest. There is probably not one of us that does not crave more rest.
About Benjamin he said, "let the beloved of the Lord rest secure in him, for he shields him all day long, and the one the Lord loves rests between his shoulders." Deuteronomy 33:12 NIV
Some versions of this scripture say “rest secure on Him” instead of “in Him”. When God is the foundation of our lives, everything is built upon Him. He is a foundation that will not get tired, give up, move away, leave, break up or walk out. We dwell on Him as He dwells in us!
Sometimes, even when there is space and time to rest, we can not find peace. Our spirits are restless. There are things in our lives that keep us on the edge of anxiety, on high alert, scanning the horizon for an oncoming storm. Our minds churn through issues and problems in a unceasing cycle of thoughts.
“Let the beloved of the Lord rest secure in him, for he shields him all day long”.
Resting like a cherished child sleeping securely while a loving parent watches over them. Other versions of this scripture refer to resting safely or confidently. I don’t know about you, but I want to rest safely, confidently, and securely right in the shelter of the most High! In Him, there is true rest, peace for my soul, a ceasing of striving and a balm for anxiety.
The Lord shelters us from the enemy.
He covers us with protection from the storm.
He gathers us under His wings of protection.
He will cover you with His feathers; you will take refuge under His wings. His faithfulness will be a protective shield. Psalm 91:4 HCSB
At the first Overflow conference, we were showing one of our out-of-town speakers, Chiquita Nolan, around the room. The tables were decorated with candles, succulents, bricks, and books. Chiquita is a very special woman with an exuberant personality and wisdom from years of following the Lord. But this woman of words and laughter, stopped and got very still when she looked upon the beautiful tables at Overflow. She looked up at me with tears forming in her eyes and asked did we display the books like that on purpose. “Like what?” I asked. She said, “You have torn all of the covers off of the books. They are exposed. Uncovered. This is what it is like to be a single mom. You always feel exposed, unprotected without a covering.” I told her that we just thought the books looked pretty that way, but I’ve never forgotten what she taught me that day about the heart of a single mom and how the Lord can provide covering to the uncovered. Protection to the unprotected. Provision to the unprovided.
He spread out a cloud as a covering, and a fire to give light at night. Psalm 105:39 NIV
God protected the ancient Israelites as they wandered in the wilderness. He gave them manna and quail to eat, a fire to give light at night and a cloud to cover and guide them. He protected and provided for his chosen people. On this side of the cross, He spreads out His covering over His Beloved through the Holy Spirit to guide and comfort us so that we can know His love personally.
Beloved, I pray that you rest secure, confident, and safely in the knowledge that in Christ Jesus you are covered and protected. That you are His, and though this life may have hardships and trials, nothing can separate you from the love of the Lord.
For I am persuaded that not even death of life, angels or rulers, things present or things to come, hostile powers, height or depth, or any other created thing will have the power to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord! Romans 8:38-39 HCSB