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Have y’all ever had a good shower cry? You know, as alone and vulnerable as it gets? That was me the other night! Crying my eyes out while the water was rushing over me.

There’s something about that. I believe there was renewal that happened that day.

For months, I’ve been in the hustle, the grind, the excitement of wedding planning and working towards preparing for marriage. In that season, my heart was so restless. Days were spent moving through the task list at work, at home, and in my relationships. I was incapable of sitting still for more than a few minutes. Y’all, I couldn’t even watch one full episode of Netflix without getting off the couch to cross something else off the list.

My struggle to sit still was not a problem with my to-do list. It was a heart problem.

My heart was restless. Not for my husband. Not for my wedding. Not for my work. For Jesus.

The happiest season of my entire life was marked by a deeper restlessness because I NEEDED Jesus. You may be thinking, how in the world did this girl struggle through the happiest season?

I tried to live life without Jesus, filled by the pursuit of people (which is good).

There were days spent at my house where I wondered from one task to the next. And by task I mean fluffing pillows, or organizing my closet, ya know the stuff that really isn’t important. The stuff that you only do when you can’t sit still.

Here’s what I learned about restlessness:

  1. I need God.
  2. I need to seek God, even when He’s already seeking me out.
  3. It’s ok to admit that I’m struggling.

Rest is receiving His love. Rest is trusting what might be ahead for your journey, whether you know your destination or not. In rest we find our purpose. We find our need for Jesus.

In my conversations after that night, I started to notice a similar theme of restlessness with the people around me. I started to realize that I wasn’t the only one. I wasn’t alone.

Have you ever had different conversations with friends, and there seems to be a theme that consistently pops into your talks? You know, a theme that is repeated. Some may say “that’s a coincidence” but I like to believe that’s Jesus revealing something to us.

Many of my friends, in different life stages, are going through seasons of restlessness.

Whether you’re preparing to bring a child into the world, you’re starting a new job or semester at college, or maybe you’re just waiting for the next “BIG” thing in your life, I pray that you’re encouraged my these words and the season ahead.

It’s so easy to have a restless spirit. I believe that restless seasons come to a halt when we stop striving and simply trust where God has us today and where He is taking us.

Rest is the equivalent to receiving, of allowing yourself to just be you and be cared for in the midst of your restlessness.

When we are restless, that means we rest, less. Right? Resting less means that we are taking it on ourselves. We are doing it all ourselves. We are believing it’s up to us to do (insert blank) in our lives.

I’ve started to notice the patterns of restlessness. These patterns were revealed to me in and through my conversations with friends in all seasons of life.

Restlessness creeps into your life when…

  1. We don’t know where we are going.
  2. We know where we are going but don’t know what to expect.

Key words here: “don’t know.” Things we don’t know in life can bring forth anxiety, fear, wondering, and ultimately striving to take control and work to bring answers to those things.

There are so many things we don’t know, friends.

There are so many things we can’t control, friends.

There are so many things we “should do”, friends.

There are so many reasons to choose striving or performance over resting because it gives us control in the things that we don’t know. (side note: hear my heart and examine the truth and beauty of working hard. That’s what God calls us to do in our days. He does not call us to strive and not trust Him in our efforts though, because ultimately many of our life outcomes are out of our control because of the world that we live in).

Back to the restless days… we work physically and mentally to feel like we are moving forwardand making progress. When we rest less, we tend to forget our purpose. Focusing on the to-do lists and the tasks feeds the need to work without rest.

And friends, you were created to both work and rest. You were created to both accomplish and trust. You were created to dream and do.

That was me. Preparing for what was ahead, yet still entering the unknown.

We have to remind ourselves where our eyes are fixed, whether we can see the destination or not. Paul talks about fixing our eyes on the destination. There’s a story in Acts 27:24-26 about Paul and others in a shipwreck, and though the storm was rough, Paul and friends were encouraged by where they were heading, where their destination was.

Together they turned away from their anxious heartsand fixed their eyes. Today, we fix our eyes. We receive rest. We receive His love. In Matthew 28, rest is a matter of receiving the Father’s love and grace.

Pause today. Rest today. You are worthy of both love and rest.

This song comes to mind in moments when I need to be still, moments when my mind is racing, moments when I desperately need to feel God’s presence and love. Listen to Pieces by Amanda Cook.

I pray that these lyrics come to life in you…

You don’t give your heart in pieces, you don’t hide yourself to tease us

You don’t give your heart in pieces, you don’t hide yourself to tease us

Your love not fractured, it’s not a troubled mind

It isn’t anxious

It’s not the restless kind

Your love’s not passive

It’s never disengaged

It’s always present

It’s hang on every word we say

Love keeps it promises

Its keeps its word

It honors what’s sacred

Cause its vows are good

Your love not broken

It’s not insecure

Your love not selfish

You love is pure

You don’t give your heart in pieces, you don’t hide yourself to tease us

You don’t give your heart in pieces, you don’t hide yourself to tease us

You don’t give your heart in pieces, you don’t hide yourself to tease us

For those of you who have made it this far, and you still can’t tell if you’re restless, read and answer these questions:

  1. Do you find yourself not able to sit still for more than 5 minutes?
  2. Are you able to easily share your thoughts with others? Are you writing or journaling?
  3. Do you know how to spend your free time? Does free time make you anxious?
  4. Are you thinking about the things that you need to do next while you’re in conversations with people? Are you ready to move on to the next thing?
  5. Are you fearful of what’s to come?

These questions are some of the things I like to check in with myself on. And a few months ago, I had a serious pulse check on my heart. I’m talking about the spiritual kind.

Yes was the answer to all of the questions above. That doesn’t make me bad human, it does mean that I’m not leaning into God for rest, provision, and security.

With you and for you friend.

Court Leatherwood is a dreamer and a creative. She’s a member of Team LO. Fueled by community, creativity and coffee, she spends her days moving the mission of Team LO through social media and graphic design. Court is passionate about encouraging other women in truth and love, and she loves celebrating small and big moments of life with handwritten cards. Court recently married the man of her dreams. 

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Courtney Leatherwood

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