Pastor Widger's November 2019 blog:

In a recent conversation with one of our members they referenced Matthew 11:28: “Come to me,all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest”. One of the beautiful things which God provides for us is His shalom rest. This rest is sometimes described as the “peace which passes all human understanding”. Divine rest brings us to believe that someday all will be “right with the world”, all things will be as they should be.

After pondering rest and peace for a moment, my mind went to the many people who visit our Grace campus each week (GLEE families, Newman families, soccer playing families, basketballers and their families). Almost all our guests have or are children. What kind of “rest” do parents of young families need? What kind of “rest” do their children need? I was forced to ask some questions –such as: How might God be calling us -the church -to bring His rest to these people we share space with? How does He want us to bless these children and families with His shalom peace and rest? I don’t yet have a ton of answers, but I think these are some of the questions God is calling us to wrestle with as a church.

As we together discover the answers to these questions, we will have the core of an outreach strategy. The people we already partner with are some of those God is asking us to connect with and serve. As we connect and serve, we too will find “rest”. Some think of rest as the absence of work. Real rest -soul rest -is something much greater. It stems from the presence of Jesus -whom we learn from. We are not called to learn more about Jesus, but rather to learn from Him. We live in an active relationship to Jesus –this is where true rest is found.

Matthew 11:29 –“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.”


Pastor Doug Widger