Jesus, Our Rest (Matthew 11:28-30)
Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light. —Matthew 11:28-30
These verses are so beautiful. Our God, who calls us to joyfully serve Him, gives us rest. He is gentle, His burden light. Come and find rest for your soul in our gentle God.
Do you labor? In an office? In a ministry at church? At home? I do.
Are you heavy laden? What is the yoke you carry? Are you burdened? I am.
I have three young children and just over a year ago my husband and I left our careers behind in Washington, DC and moved to the mission field in Central America. In this short time of change, God has taught me so much about laboring, feeling burdened and coming to Him for my rest.
I labor daily in the ministry God has called me to in my home, discipling my children. In any given day, I labor teaching my children the Bible, to read and to write, making their meals, cleaning our home. I wake up in the middle of the night to give hugs (the powerful antidote to any nightmare) and I pray that through it all I model Christ to them.
I labor on the field. I meet with women to love them, to learn their culture. I muddle through my second language and thank God for their patience with me. I pray for the city we minister in, our mission, and our teammates. I pray daily for wisdom, and for guidance, I pray the Lord will be my stay—that I will carry only His light burden.
But often I labor and I am exhausted. Completely physically, mentally and emotionally exhausted. The burdens I carry feel so heavy. I feel worry and anxiety. I know these are not of the Lord and yet still, I carry burdens that I am not made to bear. These burdens can be so heavy they wake me at night. In the dark I hear the whispers of doubt echo through my head.
What should we do with burdens like these? Let us run to Jesus. Throw yourself into Him. Because this burden of His, it isn’t heavy. He is our gentle Lord—be refreshed by His gentleness. Our God is not a God who pushes us to the brink, who leaves us to wallow in our stress. Our God is kind.
And when we yearn for rest, we need to remember our rest is the Lord. We might unwind by exercising, watching a television show, or reading a book. Those things aren’t bad ways to relax but we need to remember that true rest, the rest we seek, the rest we need to labor for Him is found only in our gentle Lord.
Stop looking for rest outside of Him, take this light yoke from our gentle Lord and labor for Him without growing weary. Cast off your burden and take up the yoke of our Lord.
What causes you to feel weary?
Are there burdens that you are carrying now that you need to cast off?
Are you coming to the Lord to rest? What does it look like for you to rest in the Lord?
Hymn of Worship: “Jesus, I Am Resting, Resting”