Rest for the Weary
by Chrissy Hampson
February 20, 2019
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened,
and I will give you rest.
Take my yoke upon you and learn from me,
for I am gentle and humble in heart,
and you will find rest for your souls.
For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
As I ran back and forth in the chaotic flurries of my own house, back when my fourth child, Annika, was needing my constant involvement with her feeding tube, her vomiting up to ten times a day, multiple doctor appointments each week, ordering supplies, hospital stays . . . doing things that only I could do, along with caring for my other three kids and homeschooling . . . what I yearned for the most, was rest. Simple rest.
The thoughts I frequently battled with were chronic and confused, “Why am I here? What about all my plans? Why am I doing this repetitive and mundane thing? Why am I trapped in my home when I’d hoped to help bring fame to God’s name across the nations? Why does my baby have to suffer?!” I grew frustrated, bitter and desperately disappointed in how things had turned out.
My bitterness waxed. I found myself fuming in my precious few moments of pause, most especially when I washed the dishes. Angry, jealous thoughts flew like darts through my mind, in sync with the flowing water and dirtied sponge. I was SO . . . MAD!
And there was no escape. Nothing. No hope of rescue. No chance for a day at the spa or a long hike. Ever. This was my life.
One day, God convicted me of this lethal thought pattern. I realized that my tiny little condo had to become my place of worship and rest. I had to become purposeful about finding pockets of rest right where I was or I wasn’t going to survive that season.
In the meantime, God also gave me Psalm 46:10, “Be still and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” I didn’t understand how God could be exalted through my stillness rather than through the bustling plans I had expected, but I took it as a promise that He would, indeed, be exalted – if I would only stop my striving heart and allow Him to whisper His truths into my ear.
In purposeful effort towards worship and rest, and as a battle plan against the bitter thoughts, I set my hymnal on the counter in front of my kitchen sink and sang aloud as I washed dishes. I placed verses more prominently around my house. Words like, “Abide in me . . . Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is good . . .” now bombarded my mind as I raced through each day.
I locked the doors during showers and chose words of promise and truth to rain down on me as the water did, “I have loved you with an everlasting love.”
My husband and I chose evenings off for each other, so we both had at least small reprieves to cling to.
I came to Jesus with a frantic heart, and God showed me where He had been and where there was still room for Him to fill. It is through purposeful resting in God’s promises and by looking for rest in a weary desert where there was no water, that I was carried through that season. It was through my willingness to let go of my own stubborn heart, through praise, and through stillness, that He did the work.
Chrissy is enjoying living in her family's new house and watching her four kids run around in the yard and climb the persimmon tree! She likes to bake, write, read, anything music-related and playing with her cute little bird, Coconut.