How to Enter the Rest of God

by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

WINNING WITH THE WORD

“Winning with the Word” is a weekly blog that will help you to be a winner in life by applying God’s principles for living the abundant life as found in the Bible, God’s manual for life.

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Hello and Happy Day! This is Dr. MaryAnn Diorio, Novelist and Life Coach, welcoming you to another episode of Winning with the Word. Today is Monday, March 30, 2020. Today’s Podcast is Episode #13 in Series 2020 and is titled “How to Enter the Rest of God”.

Most of us have heard the quote that “desperate times call for desperate measures.” It is believed that the quote originated with the Greek physician Hippocrates. Regardless, it is a quote applicable to our day.

With the rapid global spread of the Corona virus, and with no cure yet, it can be said that we are, indeed, living in desperate times. Desperate not only physically, but also financially, emotionally, and psychologically.

So, what is a body to do?

While the problem may be complex, the solution is simple. What are we to do? We are to rest in the Lord.

What does it mean to rest? An Internet search discloses the following definitions for the word “rest”:

1.  To be placed or supported so as to stay in a specified position; rest on/upon.
2.  To be based on or grounded in; depend on.

How do these definitions relate to resting in the Lord?  Well, using the first definition as a model, resting in the Lord means to be supported by Him, to lean on Him, so that we can stay in the position of peace. Using the second definition, resting in the Lord means to be grounded in Him and to depend on Him.

Resting in the Lord may be easy to do when things are going well, but when things are going crazy, it is far more difficult to rest in the Lord. 

You see, when things are going well, we become self-reliant. We feel as though we are in control of matters and that nothing can change without our changing it. But the experience of recent days proves that such thinking is a delusion. We are no more in control of our lives than we are in control of the universe. God is in ultimate control, and He ultimately calls the shots.

At the same time, God does not leave us powerless. He wants us to draw our power from Him. In short, He wants us to rest in Him. To trust that He will be there for us, even in the worst of storms.

In Hebrews 4: 11, the Bible commands us to enter into God’s rest. Listen to what it says: “Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest, lest any man fall after the same example of unbelief.” This verse instructs us to “labour” or “work” to enter God’s rest. This sounds like a contradiction, but it is not. It takes effort to enter God’s rest. That effort involves getting to know God and His character so that we can grow in trusting Him. 
 

The rest of God is the peace of God. It is the place of total, unwavering trust in God. How do we get there? By getting to know God. You see, trust comes from knowledge. We do not trust people we do not know. The people we trust the most are the people we know best.

So it is with God. Our level of trust in God will correspond to our level of knowledge of God’s character. So if you want to enter into God’s rest, get to know God intimately.
 
How can you get to know God? By accepting His Son Jesus Christ. Jesus is the only way to get to know God the Father. Jesus said, “If you have seen Me, you have seen the Father” (John 14: 9). Jesus also said, “I am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14: 6).

If you have not yet accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior, I urge you to do so now by praying this simple prayer with me:

Lord Jesus, I come to You just as I am. I need You to save me. I cannot save myself. I repent of my sins and ask You to forgive me. I invite You into my life to be my Savior and my Lord. Lead me to the place of perfect rest in You. I pray, believe, and receive in Your Name. Amen.

If you prayed this simple prayer, please write to me at drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com. I would like to send you a little booklet that will help you get started in your relationship with Jesus Christ. I also encourage you to get yourself a Bible and read it every day, starting in the Gospel of John, which is in the second half of the Bible. The Bible is God’s love letter to you, His manual for your life. In it, He reveals Who He is. In it He reveals His infinite love for you. In it, He reveals His rest.

Finally, ask the Lord to lead you to the church of His choice for you where you can learn about Him and find fellowship and encouragement with other Christ-Followers.

For those of you who may not know, I write fiction about some of the issues I deal with in this blog and podcast. As a token of my deep appreciation for all of you who follow this blog and podcast, I want to give you a FREE ebook copy of my popular novel, The Madonna of Pisano, the first book in my trilogy titled The Italian Chronicles. To receive your FREE ebook copy, please go to the link listed at the end of this post. For those of you who are listening, the link is: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/705659

Note that this offer is valid only until April 30th, so get your free ebook copy now before you forget!


I also invite you to visit my website at https://www.maryanndiorio.com/book-table. There you will find a complete list of the novels, novellas, and short stories I have written about characters with problems like yours.

On my website, you will also find additional resources, articles, non-fiction books, and podcasts to help you grow in your walk with Christ.

If you have been blessed by these messages, I also invite you to become a Winning with the Word patron on Patreon. As a patron you will enjoy special benefits only for my patrons. Just go to Patreon.com and search for Winning with the Word to join. This podcast is being sponsored by my wonderful husband and patron, Dr. Dominic Diorio. Thank you, Honey, for faithfully supporting the work of the Lord through this podcast.

And to all of you wonderful listeners out there, thank you so much for listening. This is Dr. MaryAnn Diorio, novelist and life coach, reminding you that God loves you just as you are and just where you are, and that He will help you to keep on winning with the Word.

To subscribe to “Winning with the Word”, click here.

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Now it’s your turn: Have you entered the rest of God? Please leave your comment in the Comment Box below. Thank you!

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Copyright 2000-2020 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved. This article may not be published or printed in any form whatsoever without the written permission of Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. You may contact her at info@maryanndiorio.com to request permission.

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The Controlling Heart

Do you have a controlling heart?  Or, perhaps, you know someone who does. Whichever the case, a controlling heart can cause major problems both for the one doing the controlling and the one allowing himself to be controlled.

What are some of the characteristics of a controlling heart?  Here are a few of the most common:

  • Controlling people want to dictate how everything around them is done. They nag and insist on their own way of doing things.
  • Controlling people are unable to admit their mistakes. They have to be right and refuse to listen to constructive criticism that could set them free from the spirit of control.
  • Controlling people assume authority without being asked and without the spiritual or legal right to do so. They may interrupt a meeting and simply take over, or they may make a decision they have no authority to make.
  • Controlling people micro-manage their spouses, their children, their friends, and their co-workers. They offer advice without being asked.
  • Controlling people are manipulative. They often use charm to get their own way.
  • Controlling people are narcissistic, selfish, and very immature. They believe their way is the best way. They will not consider the opinions of others as being as valid as their own.

Usually one of two evil spirits lies at the root of a controlling personality: 1) the spirit of power or 2) the spirit of fear.  Some controlling people have a sick need to dominate others and will attempt to bully them into complying with their wishes.  Other controlling people operate out of fear that if they do not hold the reins, their world will fall apart. In my experience, most controlling people are motivated by fear.  Both spirits of control will, if not confronted, destroy relationships, families, churches, and organizations.

Control issues usually start in early childhood because of a home environment that, in some way, failed to make the child feel secure.  As a result, the child developed a method of coping with anxiety by attempting to control his environment. What the controlling person fails to realize is that control is an illusion that inhibits healthful growth and fosters bondage. While authority is ordained of God, a controlling person abuses that authority to the detriment of himself and others.

People with controlling spirits are usually very insecure and have serious codependency issues. This means that they need to control others in order to feel safe and secure themselves. Especially challenging are controlling persons in positions of authority. I have seen organizations split or fail to full their destiny because of a controlling person who either led the organization or led the leader of the organization.

If you struggle with a controlling personality, get help. If you are the victim of a controlling personality, get help to free yourself in the proper way. 

God made us to be free within the confines of His Word. He who seeks to control another is assuming a role attributable only to God. Doing so is nothing short of idolatry.

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Copyright 2015 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved.

(Attitude) Dealing with Overwhelm

The 21st century with all of its technological discoveries has engendered a new disorder called Overwhelm. Grammatically speaking, “overwhelm” is a verb, not a noun.  But the case is strong for making it a noun as well.

If overwhelm were a noun, I would define it as an excessive amount of emotional and psychological input creating the feeling that one is being buried under it. (I welcome your definition.)

With that definition in mind, how can we deal with overwhelm?  Here are a few tips that have helped me:

1) Spend time with God every day seeking His will and direction for your life. Years ago, when I was struggling with overwhelm, our Lord said this to me: “You always have enough time to do what I have called you to do.”  Our Lord’s words made me realize that I was involved in some good activities that He had not called me to be involved in.  So, if you have too much on your plate, you are doing some things that God does not want you to do. Eliminate them.

2) Streamline your environment. Get rid of everything that is contributing to your overwhelm. Recently, I cleared out hundreds of books from my library, books that I will never read again and that will provide benefit to others. Not only did I clear out my house, but I also cleared out my mind.

3) Take time to regroup each day. Sometimes we experience overwhelm simply because we do not take the time to nurture ourselves. Women are especially guilty of this. So give yourself the gift of ten minutes a day just for you to do something you love to do.

Remember that you can control overwhelm. By following the three simple steps above, you will find yourself breathing freely again.
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Copyright 2013 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved.