What interesting times these are! Maybe rest looks a little bit different in this season than usual. In the midst of lockdowns and restrictions and furloughs and long school “holidays” and all of the innumerable uncertainties each of us particularly face, finding the space to rest is perhaps nuanced in such a spacious place/season we are in. For some who have been working and schooling from home in this season, carving out the down time and rest has been a discipline hard won. Ironically, finding the pockets of rest and restoration in such a spacious place has required some intention and searching. We really hope you’re finding those pockets in these weeks. And may the sun shine on you!
As we seek out those pockets of rest, to reflect and replenish and re-centre, may they be times rich in the presence of the Lord, hearing his voice and seeking his face. As we watch and wait for him, would our hearts delight at the sight of him. In these crazy, challenging, unusual and exciting days, perhaps there is a mixture of ways for us to respond at different times. The first 3 verses of Habakuk chapter 2 brings an account of Habakuk standing his watch, keeping a look out for what the Lord will say. When He replies, the Lord gives Habakuk something to declare across the land, to run with and to declare. And assures him that the timing is just right, “though it linger, wait for it…it will not delay.” We see this mix of watching, running, waiting, listening, taking heart, declaring. So often we want to know which of these we are to do in any given season. “Is it a watching/waiting season? Is it a doing/running season?” But I wonder if in this season, the whole mix is required. At times we are to run. At times we are to climb the watchtower and wait for the Lord’s voice. At times we are to declare. And indeed at times we are to rest.
You and I have a part to play in this great move of the Lord in our time. We are invited in to discern and to respond. As we pray for awakening, we reach out and contend for the great movement of the Lord that must begin in our own hearts. It is both a reaching out and a reaching in. Would the Lord search and transform us that we might love what he loves and begin to love in a way that resembles how he loves. Indeed may what we are declaring over our land, also be what we declare over our hearts. Our prayer on repeat continues to be:
Awaken our hearts,
Awaken your Church,
Awaken this land,
Do it again Lord in our time.
So as we find ourselves in these pockets of rest and recreation, let’s lean in and listen. Let’s ask and wait for the Lord to show us. Whether you feel like you’re climbing a watchtower or making camp at the base of it for a little while, let’s burrow our heads deep into the heart of the Father. Let’s be abandoned to his heart and desperate for his presence.
Perhaps the question for each of us in these summer weeks – as we sit around the campfire or the bbq or take shelter from the weather:) – Holy Spirit, what are you declaring over this land? What are you declaring over my heart? What shall I run with and where?
“I will take my stand at my watchpost and station myself on the tower, and look out to see what he will say to me, and what I will answer concerning my complaint.
And the Lord answered me:
‘Write the vision; make it plain on tablets, so he may run who reads it. For still the vision awaits its appointed time; it hastens to the end — it will not lie. If it seems slow, wait for it; it will surely come, it will not delay.’” Habakuk 2:1-3