Rest in Jesus: Stop Leaning on Your Own Strength

daniel-bobinski
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By Daniel Bobinski 

 

The more I learn about the person of Jesus, the more amazed I get, and the more I just want to relax and let Him take care of things. No, that doesn’t mean sitting around and scrolling though a social media feed while expecting Jesus to drop money into my bank account. It means resting “in Him,” and trusting that He will work things out for my good. 

Struggling to climb higher and be acknowledged is the mindset of Satan. And, as you are probably aware, much of the world has adopted this mindset. Before I proceed, let me review the five “I wills” that Satan stated, as quoted in Isaiah 14: 

  • I will ascend into heaven.
  • I will exalt my throne above the stars of God.
  • I will sit upon the mount of the congregation.
  • I will ascend above the height of the clouds.
  • I will be like theMost High.

Each of those statements has to do with “going up.” As you read over them, aren’t they similar to the ways of the world? If you look around, the ascending mindset is all around us. Perhaps most prominent is the proverbial corporate ladder, on which we’re to climb our way to success. 

Again, don’t misunderstand. We need to do what God leads us to do, and that includes providing for our families. What I’m talking about is our struggle to do it all in our own strength. 

As followers of Jesus, we do well to imitate His ways. Philippians 2 tells us that Jesus took on the nature of a servant, and that he humbled Himself. Mark 10 tells us Jesus came not to be served, but to serve. 

Psalm 25 also tells us, “He leads the humble in what is right, and teaches the humble his way.” 

So yes, I need to do what I’ve been called to do and be a responsible adult, but I think one of the reasons my blood pressure is doing much better these days is because I’m resting more in the Lord. In 1 Peter 5 we see, “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” Not some of our anxieties. Not most. All. 

That was one of the first verses I ever learned when I initially started studying the Bible, but here I am 37 years later just beginning to understand it. I’m writing this in hopes that you might pursue this mindset change sooner than I did so you can enjoy the benefits much sooner than I have. 

My wife teaches Worldview and Apologetics classes, and she has a very helpful visual for learning how to entrust God with our daily life. Quite simply, it’s holding out your hand, palm up, with fingers fully extended. By holding all we’re responsible for in this manner, God is free to make things work on our behalf when we seek Him and ask Him to do His will. 

However, as soon we as wrap our fingers around something, God basically says, “Okay — if you want to control it, go ahead.” 

A few months ago, I enrolled in a class to learn Biblical Greek. This is something I highly recommend if you can afford the time, because it helps with understanding Scripture SO much more. 

Greek grammar is much different than English grammar, and there’s so much more depth of understanding to gain by learning to read and interpret Greek. Most interestingly, one of the things I learned in class dovetails with this word picture my wife uses. 

You’ve probably heard Philippians 2:5-6: 

Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped. 

Interestingly, another viable Greek translation could be: 

Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, while existing in the form of God, regarded not grasping to be equal to God (emphasis mine). 

You get the idea. Grasping and striving to ascend are not what God would have us do. Operating as a servant to others and releasing our grasp on things is the way that God would have us live. 

Obviously, saying this is easier than doing it. Remember, the Lord’s been trying to get me to understand this for 37 years, and I’m just now starting to comprehend it. My suggestion to my fellow believers is to seek to rest more in Christ. Whether it’s at family gatherings, or the workplace, or even at church, by holding out our hands palm up with fingers outstretched, we can say, “Here, Lord. These worries, cares, concerns, and projects I give to you. Please take them and do Your will. Show me my part and I’ll do it, but the results I leave up to you.” 

With this, you can rest in Jesus and rely on Him to take care of the results. And who knows? Maybe your blood pressure will go down, too. 

 

Daniel Bobinski, M.Ed. teaches teams and individuals how to use Emotional Intelligence (more info at www.MyWorkplaceExcellence.com). He’s also a home fellowship leader, a homeschooling dad, a best-selling author, and a popular speaker at conferences and retreats. Reach him at daniel@eqfactor.net or (208) 375-7606. 

 

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