Rest: Part 5

Brother Sikes wrote:

Another major revelation in staying in the rest can be found in I Corinthians 4:4,5 – “Everything hidden will be revealed.” When something in us has been revealed, we must be quick to acknowledge it to God, seek God’s direction, and if so directed make it right with those we may have offended or done wrong. Living transparent is a key to rest. Cover up is key to restlessness. Our Father will correct us if we will allow it because “those He loves He chastens.” A true son, who is led by the Spirit will not only hear the Lord’s correction, but also will be quick to respond to it. God honors transparency; in fact, he rewards it with anointing and favor.

“It is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful” (I Corinthians 4:2). We will be given opportunities to “prove faithful” as everything hidden is revealed. What will we do with it? Will we repent? Will we acknowledge it? Will we make it right with our brothers and sisters? If we “prove faithful,” God will reward us with anointing and favor. A major key to staying in God’s rest, which results in His favor, is staying “transparent.” Cover up will stop God’s favor as sure as transparency will start it. The extent to which we live our lives in transparency, to that extent will God’s mercy, favor and blessing flow into our lives. God rewards faithfulness.


What do you do when opposition comes? Do you bow to it or do you fight it? If most of us were honest our answer would be that we rise, and yet nothing will rob our peace quicker than rising against that which God sends to oppose us. It is here that we must remember Romans 11:36, “All things are of, through, and to God.” Only accurate discernment and a yielded ness to God enable us to recognize opposition as God-sent. Is the broad statement being made here stating that the opposition I face in life could be from God? Arthur Burt, whose revelation of this is deeper than any I have been exposed to, states in his book Surrender, “Every moment of everyday I am either bowing or rising: bowing and glorifying God or rising and glorifying myself…so then, finality is glory, either man’s or God’s. Which shall it be?”

Opposition is designed and ordained of God to reveal to us areas in which our heart is not submitted to God. If we will simply allow God, by bowing to the opposition, He will reveal what is in us and give us the opportunity to “judge it” – repent, so He will not have to. By refusing to see the opposition as from God, we consequently lose what God is trying to reveal as ugliness within, and consequently we lose our peace and place of rest. Again, quoting from Arthur’s book, “If I (can learn to see God) in challenging circumstances, I will bow to the infinite wisdom that permits what the almighty power could prevent.” God can allow or permit anything. If “all things work together for our good,” then we should never doubt the power and vast importance of the words “all things” in our lives. Joseph told his brothers, “It is was not you who through me down that well, but God!

It is such a foreign thought to those of us who naturally fight and contend for what we perceive to be ours, or what we perceive to be right or wrong. We feel instinctively that we must rise up and position ourselves against the wrong we perceive. Again quoting from Surrender, “Man’s attempt to steal God’s glory occurs when his heart functions out of order and instead of bowing, rises in self-exaltation (pride). More damnable than any sin, more vile than any injury a man can inflict on his brother, is this refusal to bow to God, this rebellion of the heart in its uprising as it seeks to unseat God from His throne – to become a god instead of having a God! It is the same response Eve had when satan tempted her to eat of the forbidden fruit, insisting that she and Adam would “be as gods” (Gen. 3:5). When we judge from our limited perspective, we become god, and as inevitable as darkness befalling night, we lose our peace and rest.

I recently saw one of the most powerful examples of what can happen when we choose to rest in God, even in the direst of circumstances. A local Christian family experienced the horror of losing their 24 year old eldest son to drugs. His death shook the core of many young people in this community as evidenced by the vast numbers who attended his funeral. Well in advance of the funeral the family began to sense a divine purpose and began to rest in that purpose and yield to God instead of allowing the normal feelings of anger and guilt. They soon found out that their son had attended church recently, and that the pastor had called him out and prophesied that his life would be used to turn many young people to the Lord.

Bravely, as the service ended, the young man’s father stood before the church, and with one hand on his boy’s casket he said, “Don’t let my son’s death be in vain. There is a reason for everything that happens and this is your wakeup call.” He implored the young people, as a loving father, to examine their lives. The young man’s grandfather, a local minister, came forward and gently asked if those in attendance wanted to get their lives right with God. Many accepted the Lord. As yielded vessels in God’s rest this family turned a community of young people to a loving God, and in the course of doing so set one of the most powerful Godly examples I have ever witnessed. Through rest comes restoration.

Many young people, including my sons, were spiritually affected by the tragic death of their friend, yet by choosing the “rest” of God, a family allowed their tragic lose to produce enormous gain. Through rest comes restoration, and by bowing to the Father instead of fighting and contending with Him, a community will never be the same.

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