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Watch 2022 online sermons » Craig Smith » Craig Smith - Forget Balance, Find Rhythm

Craig Smith - Forget Balance, Find Rhythm

Craig Smith - Forget Balance, Find Rhythm
TOPICS: The Big Ten, Sabbath, Rest in God, Restoration, rest

Well, hey, so good to have you with us today. We are in the middle of a deep dive into the Ten Commandments here at Mission Hills. If you’re just joining us, here’s probably the most important thing you need to know about the Ten Commandments. We’ve said this every week so far, we’re gonna say it every week going forward, because it’s so important. This is the lens that we need to use to look at the Ten Commandments, and this is the lens, rules don’t create relationships, they regulate them, okay? Rules don’t create relationships, they regulate them. So, following the rules is not how we get a relationship with God. We get a relationship with God by following Jesus, by putting our faith, our trust in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. But when we have that relationship, the rules, the commandments God has given us help us to regulate them. They help us to keep the relationship moving forward, and they help the relationship stay where all of the good things that God wants us to experience in that relationship become possible. All the good things like peace, and meaning, and significance, and hope, and ultimately even joy.

And I realize that might be a different way of thinking about the Ten Commandments, that they’re ultimately supposed to lead to joy, but we really believe that’s true of all of the Ten Commandments. And it’s especially obvious, it’s especially evident, in the fourth commandment. We see that potential most clearly in the fourth commandment that we’re gonna take a look at today. If you wanna grab your Bible, we’re gonna be in the Book of Exodus, starting in Chapter 20, verse 8 today. I don’t know if you’ve ever heard a sermon on the fourth commandment, but the fourth commandment in case you’re racking your brains right now going, “What is fourth commandment?” Fourth commandment says this, says, “Remember the Sabbath Day by keeping it holy.” Remember the Sabbath Day by keeping it holy.

Now, I don’t know if you’ve ever heard a message on that. I can only remember ever hearing one of them. I was a young youth pastor at a church and the pastor preached on this commandment. And he took a pretty, what’s called an aggressive stance. I remember at one point in the message, he looked at the congregation he goes, “Listen, if you go out to lunch after church at a restaurant, you’re breaking the fourth commandment.” And I was like, “Hold on, really?” And then he went a little further, he said, “And worse still, you’re causing other people to break the fourth commandment. You’re causing the waiters, and the waitresses, and the shafts, and all those people, you’re making them break the fourth commandment. You know what the Bible says about causing other people to sin? “It’d be better to be thrown to the ocean with a millstone hung around your neck.” And I was like, “Oh, boy.”

Let me tell you that message gave Coletta and I a lot to talk about that afternoon over lunch at Chili’s. I honestly, in my personal and professional opinion, I think he missed the heart of the fourth commandment. Okay, so what is God’s heart in the fourth commandment? Well, let’s take a look at it in its entirety. Fourth commandment. Exodus 20:8 says this, “Remember the Sabbath Day by keeping it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. And on it, you shall not do any work and either you nor your son, or daughter, or your male or female servant, nor your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns, for in six days, the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. And therefore, the Lord blessed the Sabbath Day and made it holy.”

Now, it’s interesting. The fourth commandment is the longest of the Ten Commandments. And I don’t think that’s because it’s the most important of them. I think the most important one’s probably that first one, the foundational one about making God a priority. So why is it longer than all the others? I think it’s because it’s the one that we have the hardest time following, honestly. And you can almost even see that in the commandment itself, right? Like, he really digs into some specifics about, like, who’s supposed to pay attention to this, right? You know, he says, “You’re not supposed to work.” And you can almost see people going, “Oh, excuse me, like, who?” He goes, “You.” “Well, what about…?” “And your sons and your daughters.” “Well, what about…?” “Not your animals either.” “Well, not the foreigner?” “Okay, no, no, nobody’s supposed to work. It’s supposed to be a day of no work,” right?

And I think God almost sort of told us right off the beginning, “You guys are gonna have a hard time with this thing. And you’re gonna have a hard time doing what I’m calling you to do. And so, I’m gonna drill down.” So, it’s the longest of the… It’s not the most important, but because I think it’s the hardest one for us to understand. And here’s the thing, if we look at what the whole Bible has to say about the Sabbath, basically, the whole of boils down to two principles, two things that the Sabbath is really about. And it’s these, the fourth commandment is about having a rhythm of remembering our God, that’s the first one, and restoring our strength. Take a look at the whole Bible, when I say about the Sabbath, those are the two things that come out time and time again. The fourth commandment is about having a rhythm or a periodic regular rhythm of remembering our God and restoring our strength.

Now, the remembering our God part’s pretty easy to see in the commandment itself, right? He’s got all this holy language, right? He says, “Remember the Sabbath Day by keeping it holy.” At the very end he says, “Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath Day and made it holy.” In the middle, he says, “The seventh day is a Sabbath Day to the Lord your God.” In other words, it’s God’s day, right? It’s a different day than the other days. It’s a set-apart day. It’s a sacred day. It’s a holy day. And this is the reason that historically, God’s people have used one day a week to really focus on their faith, to really focus on worshiping God. For the Jewish people, that was Saturday, that Saturday was their Sabbath. Christians in the first century changed their Sabbath to Sunday, because that was the day of the week that Jesus rose from the dead. But both Jews and Christians from the very beginning have always had a day where we focus on worshiping God because it’s God’s day, it’s a day to remember our God.

Now, remembering our God also involves remembering two things about ourselves that are really important. Remembering our God is also about remembering who we are and whose we are. Remembering our God is also about remembering who we are and whose we are. So who are we? According to the Bible, we are made in or as God’s image. We’re made as sort of God’s hands, and feet, and creation. We’re made to represent God and his interest and extend his influence into every corner of creation itself. We’re made to be on mission with him. We find that on the very first page of the Bible. That’s who we are and that’s an incredible privilege. We’re kind of like royal ambassadors for God. That’s an incredible privilege. But we also have to remember not only who we are, we also have to remember whose we are, right?

We represent the King, we don’t replace the King okay? We’re the King’s men and women. We’re his servants. We’re his soldiers. We’re his missionaries. We’re all those things. We’re his. And the reality is that we often get that wrong. Sometimes we ask what the Psalmist asked, which is, “What is mankind that you’re mindful of him? What’s the big deal about human beings?” And we see something of the value that God puts on us, and we get a little puffed up, and instead of trying to represent God, we begin to try to replace God. We kind of push God off the throne, and we go, “I’ll just have a little seat here. I think I’ll just call the shots from here on out.” And here’s the reality, every problem that you’ve ever faced in life, every problem that you have faced that you are facing right now, every problem you ever will face in life, ultimately traces back to someone trying to replace God rather than represent him. You hear me, church?

Every problem you’ll ever face in life, ultimately traces back to somebody trying to replace God rather than represent him. It might have been someone else doing that to you, but it also might have been you or it might have been you and someone else doing it together, you’re both trying to replace God, you’re fighting for God’s place on the throne. And the world is the mess that it is because of this attempt, this regular choice to replace God rather than represent him. And so, what do we need to keep from doing that? What we need is that we need a regular reminder of who we are and whose we are, right? We need a regular reminder of who we are and whose we are. And that’s part of remembering our God. And the primary way we do that is by having a day of the week where we really focus in on worship.

And let me tell you something about worship that I am surprised by how many people misunderstand. A lot of people seem to think that God commands us to worship him because he needs his fix. It’s almost like God’s trying to get his worship fix, by getting us to have one day a week where we do it. But let me tell you something really important, God doesn’t need your worship. Okay? God existed for all eternity before he created you and I and our worship, and you know what? He was okay. If you and I never worship God again, God will be just fine. But we won’t. You and I won’t be. So here’s an important truth to understand. God isn’t made stronger by our worship or weakened by the lack of it, but we are. We are weakened by our lack of worship. We are strengthened by giving worship to God. It’s the way that God designed us, the way God got built us. And so, ultimately, this commandment to worship God, to remember our God, is actually really good for us.

And I have people tell me all the time, “Hey, you know, I know I should go to church, I know I should worship, but I’m just, I’m so busy,” or, “I’m so tired,” or, “I’m so tired of being so busy.” Anybody? You ever feel like that? Yeah? People tell me all the time, “I know I should go to church, but I’m just so tired. I’m so busy.” And I get that. I do understand that. But what I usually wanna say back to them is “No, no, no, you’re too tired not to worship. You’re too busy not to go to church.” Saying you’re too tired to go to worship is like saying, “I’m too tired to eat a good meal. A healthy meal.” No. If you’re that tired, you desperately need to put something in your body that will strengthen you to move forward. He said, “I’m too busy to get to go to church.” No, you’re too busy not to go to church. That’s like saying, “I’m too tired. I’m too busy to get a good night’s sleep.” You know, the busier you are, the more tired you are, the more desperately you need that in your life.

Well, I know what it’s like to be tired. I do. A lot of people seem to think that senior pastors practice a reverse Sabbath. That’s where you work for one day, and then you have six days off. I get people all the time asked me like, “Do you do anything the rest of the week?” Yeah, I have a couple of things. In fact, most weeks, at the beginning, well, not maybe most weeks, but quite a few weeks at the beginning of the week, the first thing that my assistant says to me, she goes, “I’m sorry about this week.” And she doesn’t need to be sorry. She does an incredible job managing my schedule and guarding my time and energy for what matters most. But the reality is there’s just a lot to do, okay? So I understand what it’s like to be busy. I understand what’s like to get to the weekend and be tired.

And I’m gonna be honest with you, I often drive to church and I have this prayer, I say to God, “Hey, you know where you said that, you know, your strength is perfected in my weakness? Well, this is gonna be a good weekend then, right?” Because I’m whipped. Like, I’m running on fumes. And you know the only thing that actually fuels me to get up here, the only thing that actually energizes me to get up here and to try to help people follow Jesus by teaching his Word, it’s worship. And some of you see me, I hang out by the sound booth usually, and I sing the songs, and I lift my hands, and I even do a couple little dances sometimes. I got a couple of little moves that aren’t bad for a white boy like myself. But that’s where the fuel is coming from and we’re all built that way. Whether you know that or not, you are built to worship and it’s actually a good thing that God calls us to worship. God calls us to remember who he is because it’s actually fuel for our souls.

So the fourth commandment is about having a rhythm of remembering God because it’s good for us in lots of ways. The fourth commandment is also about having a rhythm of restoring our strength. It’s having a rhythm of rest. It’s having a rhythm of ceasing and stopping a lot of the things that we do so that we can begin to recharge. That’s actually what the word Sabbath means. The word Sabbath is actually the Hebrew word for to stop, or to cease, to rest. The first time it shows up is in the Book of Genesis chapter 2, verse 2. It says this, “By the seventh day, God had finished the work that he had been doing, all the creating of the universe. And so, on the seventh day, he rested from all his work.” He ceased. He stopped. He took a break. Now, question, it’s a deep, tough theological question, but let me ask you anyway, do you think God needed to rest because he was whipped? Do you think God said, “I’m gonna take a break because, like, I did all this and, whew, I just need a nap.”

No. God has infinite energy. God never runs out of strength, okay? So why would he stop? Why would he cease? Why would he rest? And I think the answer is God was setting an example for us. Because God never gets tired, but we do. Can I get an amen? God never runs out of strength, but we do. And the interesting thing is, you know, we usually rest because either we’re worn out or we’re trying to keep ourselves from getting worn out, right? God didn’t rest because he was worn out, God rested because he knew that we needed it. And so, he set an example for us. And that means again, don’t miss this, it means that the fourth commandment is good for us. God gave it to us because he was trying to be good to us. God gave it to us because he loved us and wants the best for us.

Jesus made that extremely clear when he was talking about the Sabbath. And Jesus said, “The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath.” You see that, church? The Son of God said, “Hey, by the way, here’s what my dad did. He gave us a Sabbath, he gave you a Sabbath, he gave you a rest day for you. He didn’t create you so that you could rest, he created the Sabbath so that you could rest.” Because we need it. It’s for us. It’s about recharging. And here’s the reality, there’s only so much juice in the battery, right? There’s only so much juice we got in the battery, so we need to recharge on a regular basis. And how do we recharge? Two things have to happen to recharge. Number one, recharging requires plugging in. Number two, powering down. Recharging requires plugging in and powering down. It requires plugging into another power source, right? Because plugging into a greater power source than you have. And that’s what we talked about already in worship. That’s what worship is. Plugging into God.

But we also have to power down. We have to lower the demand enough that we could actually begin to recharge. I don’t know if you’ve ever had this experience, but sometimes, you know, I’ll plug my phone in to charge because it’s getting really low, and I’ll plug my phone, and if I leave my phone alone, right? Couple hours, it’s good to go. It’s got a full charge. But if I keep using my phone, even while it’s plugged in, a couple hours go by, and I look at the charge, and I realize it’s not really charged all that much. It’s what we call a trickle charge. Most of the energy coming in is actually going to powering the device that I’m using rather than actually recharging the battery. And here’s the reality guys, a lot of us are doing life that way. We’re counting on a trickle charge because we’re never really unplugging, we’re never really disconnecting, we’re never really stopping, we’re never really ceasing, we’re never really resting. And so, we’re always tired because we’re just trickle charging. We’re not powering down. So even though we might be plugging in, we’re not powering down.

Here’s an interesting reality. The Bible commands one day of rest. In Western culture, it’s standard to have two days of rest, we call it the weekend. But during the pandemic, there’s been an increasing movement to have three days of rest. It’s called the 4-day workweek movement. And I realized, by the way, some of you listening to that are like, “That’s crazy. I haven’t had a day off in six months.” We’re not talking about you. But there’s an increasing movement to have three days. And it’s interesting, a lot of leaders that I hear are talking about that movement, they’re going, “People have just gotten lazy.” And here’s the thing, I don’t think they’re lazy, I think they’re exhausted. I think the exhaustion level in our culture has never been higher.

Recent study found that 75% of workers in the United States are either currently struggling or have recently struggled with burnout. Burnout isn’t just being tired, it’s being tired in a way that normal rhythms of rest don’t help. Can’t fix. How many of us, let’s be honest can we? Online, I want you to say in the comments if it’s true for you too. How many of us when somebody says, “How are you doing?” Our first gut reaction is, “I’m tired?” Come on. Come on. It’s a lot of us, yeah. That’s a symptom of burnout. How about this? How many of us have ever gone on a vacation and come back feeling pretty good, but like 10 minutes into Monday morning, you’re like, “I need another vacation, yeah? That’s probably a symptom of burnout, actually. The rest isn’t doing it. So it’s interesting, right? We have the Bible mandating one day of rest. We’ve made two days sort of standard. And we’re moving towards three days. And yet the reality is in some senses where we’re working less than ever, and we’re more tired than ever. What gives, right? What’s going on?

And I think the answer is, we’re not unplugging or we’re not powering down. And maybe we’re plugging into God, and that’s good, and that’s healthy. But we’re not powering down enough to actually begin to recharge. We’re not doing anything other than bringing a trickle charge in. Now, a lot of reasons for it. One of them honestly, is our cell phones, can we just be honest about that? Because our cell phones make it really hard to disconnect, right? Our cell phones keep us checked in when we should be checked out, right? Because let’s face it, I mean, you can be laying in bed and you can check your work email, or Slack, or you can, you know, check out, well, maybe if your insecurity or your jealousy isn’t running at full capacity, you check Instagram, right? You scroll through Facebook and see what everybody else is doing that’s picture-perfect and feel bad about yourself, and then try to get a good night’s sleep, right? We can do that in a way we’ve never been able to do and that’s part of the problem.

But the reality is that our cell phones are actually just one symptom of the real problem. And the real problem is this, our lives are out of rhythm. Our lives are out of rhythm. And it’s interesting, we don’t talk that much about rhythm. In our culture, we talk a lot about balance. We talk about work-life balance, work-friends balance, work-family balance. We talk a lot about balance. But I actually don’t think balance is what we’re supposed to seek. In fact, as I read the fourth commandment and what the Bible has to say about this call to a Sabbath, what I realized is that God’s plan for us isn’t balance, its rhythm. Say that again. It’s so important. God’s plan for us isn’t balance, it’s rhythm. Think about it. If God’s plan was for balance, we should have had an 8-day workweek, right? Four days and on four days off. And a lot of you are like, “Ooh, let’s do that.” Right?

But that actually wouldn’t be good for us, because the reality is a too much rest can break us just as badly as too much work. Like, you can kill a car engine by revving it too hard for too long. You can also kill a car engine by leaving it idle for too long and the oil congeals and the next time you have to try to get it running, it burns up in short order. The reality is, we’re not called to seek balance. So here’s the thing about balance, here’s the problem with balance. Balance is about stasis, okay? Balance is about stasis. It’s about getting everything lean together just right. It’s about get better getting everything perfectly distributed in its proper place, right? And then praying to God that nothing gets added to it because that’ll destroy the balance. It’s also about praying to God that nothing gets taken away from because that’ll destroy balance just as quickly. It’s about praying to God that nothing comes along and bumps the perfect balance we’ve achieved in the slightest way and it all comes crashing down.

I mean, the reality is that first off, balance is elusive, it’s really hard to do. Secondly, it’s fragile. It’s incredibly easy to destroy. And third, while balance might be impressive, it’s not life-giving. Balance is not life-giving. Let me have you listen to perfect balance. So I’m gonna give you a sound of something that has a perfect balance, perfect stasis of frequency of pitch, and the volume. Here is the sound of perfect balance. When do we hear that in life? When life is over, right? It’s a harsh, jarring, unsettling sound, but it is a perfect example of balance. It is perfect balance. It is perfect stasis. But do we want it? No. We want this, right? But that’s not balance. That’s rhythm.

Let me tell you three things that are important to understand about rhythm. First, rhythm isn’t just a sign of life. It’s a source of life. Rhythm creates energy. Rhythm creates momentum. I mean, even right now. I mean, I can see some of you you’re are kind of bobbing your head a little bit. If you’re not quite that expressive, maybe you’re beginning to tap your foot a little bit, right? See, rhythm actually imparts energy and moves us forward. It’s not just a sign of life, it’s a source of life.

Second, rhythm can be busy and still healthy. If you got the right rhythm going on, you can begin to add in some other things. And you don’t have to add them in an equal measure. Like, Logan back here can play the kick drum a lot more than he plays the snare. It’s still rhythm. Everything’s not getting equal weight, everything’s not balanced. He can start playing the hi-hat, and he can get really busy on the hi-hat. It’s a lot going on there. It’s still healthy. It’s still energizing. It still moves us forward. Sometimes you can even get to the point where you realize that what drummers do is they can do fills. He can hit a lot of stuff for a moment. We have seasons where things are really busy, right? But when you have rhythm, you can allow for those and you can come out of them every bit as healthy as you went in. You can actually come out of them with more momentum than you went in with.

The third thing you understand but rhythm is this, rhythm depends on not doing as much as doing. This is the one that’s, it’s hard for us to recognize because we go, “I hear the kick, I hear the snare, I hear hi-hats, I hear those things, but the only reason you could hear them and distinguish them is because they’re not happening all the time. For every time the kick gets hit, there’s a whole bunch of times that it doesn’t. For every time you hear the snare, there’s a bunch of times that you don’t. Even the hi-hat that’s going much, much faster, you could hear them because it’s now but not now, now not now. Rhythm is about what we don’t do as much as what we do and that’s what the fourth commandment is telling us. Like, you gotta not do so that you can do.

And listen, if the search for balance is a search for stasis, the search for rhythm is the search for what’s appropriate. Rhythm is about appropriateness. It’s about what’s appropriate in this season, in this moment and not in this other. And we have different seasons of life. We have short ones, we have long ones. We have rhythms and seasons during the day, during the week, the month, the year, and even beyond that. And it’s always about what is appropriate in this season, in this moment, and what’s not. When my kids were at home, I made a decision, I wasn’t gonna write books until they weren’t in the house anymore. I decided it wasn’t appropriate for me to be writing because I needed to be focused on them while I had that opportunity. Now my kids are out of the house and I’m beginning to think through what does it look like to maybe re-enter that space a little bit? But it’s about what you do and don’t do. It’s about the search for what’s appropriate in the moment in the season.

God loves rhythm. God’s all about rhythm. I don’t see much about balance in the Bible, but I see a lot about rhythm. Let me read you one of the most famous passages about rhythm. Ecclesiastes 3, “There’s a time for everything and a season for every activity under the heavens. There’s a time to be born, and a time to die. A time to plant and a time to uproot. A time to kill, and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn, and a time to dance. A time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing, a time to search and a time to give up. A time to keep, a time to throw away. A time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak. A time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.” See, that’s rhythm. It’s not balance, it’s rhythm.

It’s what’s appropriate in this moment and not in this other moment. It’s about finding rhythm. That’s what the fourth commandment is all about. The fourth commandment is about having a rhythm of remembering our God and restoring our strength. You know, some of you may know this, I’ve shared it before that for years I’ve struggled with sleep. And I’ve tried everything and it just wasn’t making any difference. Well, earlier this year, God actually brought a healing into my life. And for those of you who’ve been praying for me, just thank you so much. I really believe God was responding to that. But he didn’t respond with a new miracle drug, and he didn’t respond by some kind of miraculous event that I just went to bed one night and started sleeping fine. What he actually did is he brought a guy into my life, who asked me some questions, and he said, “Oh, yeah, you’ve confused your brain.” “What do you mean?”

He goes, “Well, you had some problem that was keeping you from sleeping, maybe a sleep apnea, maybe it was stress if something was going on. And the problem is the way you handled it destroys your rhythm. The way you handled it confused your brain. And so now you get in bed and your brain is like, “Wait a minute, what do we do here? Is this where we get anxious about not being able to sleep? Is this where we think about that big meeting that’s coming tomorrow? Is this where we check our email, or our Twitter feed, or our Instagram? Is this where we watch TV? What do we do here again?” And so, what he began to do with me is to start re-establishing the right rhythms. We sort of figured out, okay, when is it appropriate to work? And when is it appropriate to not work? And when is it appropriate to connect with my wife and my kids? And when do I start getting ready for bed? And when do I actually go to bed and get in bed and start to try to fall asleep? And when do I get up again? It was all about rhythm. I mean, the problem had been that I had basically ignored God’s call to rhythm. And by the grace of God bringing this man in my life, like, I’m sleeping again. I’m not struggling with sleep in the same way. I sleep consistently. But it’s rhythm. That’s why we call it this message,” Forget Balance, Find Rhythm.” That’s what God’s calling us to.

So, I’m gonna give you a homework assignment. This is God’s homework assignment for you, I believe. I want you to ask yourself this question, what’s my daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly rhythm of five things? And you need to think in all of those seasons, because things differ from season to season. So, in terms of your daily, your weekly, your monthly, or yearly rhythm, five things of God, family, friends, work, and rest. By the way, if you wanna grab these notes, you can always grab the Mission Hills app and go to the message notes, and you’ll see all of these things we’ve talked about today.

But I want to ask you that question, of these five things, like, what’s my rhythm of these things? And you might be going, “Well, hang on a second, there’s some stuff missing, like, what me-time?” Let’s rest. Rest doesn’t just mean that we lay on the couch. It means that we do things that are different than the other things that we do. We’re doing the things that we enjoy, things that actually pour strength into us. Me time fits into rest, you’re like “Well, what about my household chores?” That’s work. Like, if you don’t necessarily want to do it, it doesn’t matter if you’re getting paid for it or not, we’re just gonna call that work, okay? But I want you to think deliberately about it, like, what’s my rhythm? And begin to seek God’s rhythm. And I’ll give you four tips as you do this. Number one, remember think rhythm not balance. Not about everything getting equal weight is about what’s appropriate in this moment, in this season, and what’s the right rhythm?

Second thing is this, understand that rhythms are not rigid. One of the things that Jesus pushed back on was a very rigid interpretation of the fourth commandment that they couldn’t allow for anything to flex. Rhythms aren’t rigid. There can be adjustments. If you have the right rhythm, you can handle those kinds of things.

Third thing is this, is anticipate that rhythms change with the seasons of life. If you have kids at home right now, your rhythms are gonna look a little differently than if you don’t have kids at home. If you have little kids at home, you know, your rhythms, just forget about it for a while, right? No, I’m kidding, you can actually find rhythm, but it’s gonna be different than it looks like when your kids go off to school. Rhythms change with the seasons, keep that in mind.

And fourth, and just remember this, that rhythm is as much about what you don’t do as what you do. Let’s just forget rhythm…forget balance. It’s an elusive and ultimately draining idol. And it’s not gonna be able to give you what God calls you to. God says, “Forget balance, find rhythm.”

And by the way, we’re really just covering God’s heart for the fourth commandment here. If you’re interested in digging in a little bit more, especially to how Jesus dealt with the very rigid understanding of that in the first century, we actually created some bonus material. And so, you go to the Mission Hills app, and under the message questions, we actually record a little video where you can dig into some more detail. I mean, it will be a great thing to watch with your Life Group, maybe talk about your Life Group, or with your husband, or your wife, or your family, or some friends. Because Jesus had a lot to say about how the first-century religious leaders were approaching the Sabbath and really missing the heart of it. So if you wanna dig into that, feel free to grab that. But in the meantime, let’s listen to God’s call to find rhythm. Would you pray with me?

God, we thank you that your goodness is on display so clearly in this commandment. And we recognize that in your call that we would have this regular rhythm of remembering you, and who we are, and whose we are. And in his regular rhythm of restoring our strength, you are showing us your goodness. And we ask for the leading of your Holy Spirit to find rhythm. And we pray for those that are listening this message that they don’t have the relationship with you that we’re talking about. The relationship is regulated by these rules, but a relationship that can’t be gotten just by following them. Those come after.

And if that’s you, if you’re listening this message and you don’t have that relationship with God, it may be that you’re feeling pretty worn out and tired today. And the reason, ultimately, is because you don’t have peace with God. Maybe your sin is weighing heavily on you, the wrong that you’ve done, you’re struggling with the guilt and the shame of that. You need to hear the words of Jesus when he said, “Come to me all you who are weary and heavily burdened, and I will give you rest.” Jesus died on the cross to pay for your sin, to set you free from it, to forgive you of it. To give you rest, but it’s a rest that’s only available in him. It’s a rest that’s only available by faith. And if you never said yes to faith in Jesus and the rest that’s made possible by that, here’s how you do it, just right here, right now, have this conversation with God. Say:

God, I have done wrong. I’ve sinned and I feel the weight of it. I’m sorry. Jesus, thank you for dying on the cross for me. I believe you rose from the dead and I’m ready to follow you. I’m putting my faith and my trust in you. I accept your forgiveness and your rest. Jesus, I’m yours for now and forever. Amen.

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