28 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
While I am sad to be taking a week off from the Psalm 107 study this week, I am truly excited to spend the week in these verses, reviewing the sermon from this weekend. It was an incredibly powerful message for me, and spending the week reflecting on all that I have learned will encourage a lasting impact on my heart.
This has always been one of my all time favorite verses in Scripture...just reading in brings rest to my soul. He really is the God of all comfort and He can bring peace into our lives when there is chaos. We only need to trust that He will. He is able and willing to meet us in times of need - even when that need is self-inflicted. He will never mock us or tell us, I told you so. He is just as faithful to His promises on our very worst day as He is on our best day. He knows how fickle our hearts can be, He knows how difficult it is for us to trust Him, He knows our fears and our anxieties, He knows how hard it is to lay it all down in front of Him, He knows we often choose to run away from Him rather than to Him in the chaos, yet He still continues to move toward us with unrelenting and empowering grace through it all.
But there is so much more in these verses than I ever understood. In these words, Jesus calls us to reject the lie the world teaches us - that we are self-sufficient and we have everything we need to make it through this world - and come to Him. The reality is we know there will be seasons of heavy lifting in our lives, we know there will be times in our lives when the load will be more than we can carry on our own, but we were never designed to carry the burdens as we’ve been carrying them. I love the quote from James this weekend: The battle is real, the enemy is fierce, and the stakes are enormous. Sometimes we are so heavily burdened that we desperately need of the rest Jesus offers and nothing else will do. When it’s too much too carry, Jesus says come to me. What a beautiful invitation.
Now, if you’re anything like me, you’ve read this verse in the past, and visually imagined yourself off loading your burden at the feet of Jesus. I’ve always welcomed the invitation to bring my burdens to Him and lay them down - there is a momentary relief in the battle when I take the load off for awhile. I find His comfort and His strength in the moment as I set the load down, I feel refreshed and renewed as I spend time with Him, but then I pick my burdens right back up and continue to carry them until I reach the point of exhaustion again. That’s what I always thought this verse was saying to us, lay your burdens down, but that’s not it at all. Here’s the truth in this verse -> The weight of what we must carry in those seasons can only find rest by learning to carry our burdens as Jesus carries them. We are not simply supposed to be dumping our burdens at Jesus’ feet - while that may lighten our load for a short period, it doesn’t remove our burdens. We are are to be carrying our burdens as Jesus carried burdens - that’s how we lighten our load. He doesn’t say lay down your burdens to us at all. He doesn’t say He will take our burdens from us. What He does say we will find rest if we come to Him - that I have found. When I bring my burdens to Him, and I tell Him I’m exhausted from carrying them, I do find His rest, His peace, His comfort, His strength. The problem is it isn’t a lasting rest because I pick my burdens right back up again and carry them as I’ve always carried them. What I’ve been missing in this verse is the part where He says: 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 11:29-30. Take my yoke and learn from me, for my yoke is easy. He is trying to teach us HOW to carry our burdens. He is saying carry your burdens as I carry them - use my yoke because my yoke is easy.
I could spend the entire day journaling on all that I’ve learned in these verses, but then this would be far longer than any one would want to read. I want to savor the reflection throughout the week so I’ll end it here for now. I will say this as a personal reflection: I haven’t been carrying the burden of cancer as I should have been carrying it. Yes, I have been bringing it to Him and laying it at His feet every day, where I have been finding His rest, His strength, His comfort, but I pick it back up again and throw it back up on my shoulders as I step out of my quiet time with Him. And to be honest, my friends, the cancer isn’t the heaviest burden I carry by far. The battle is real, the enemy is fierce, and the stakes are enormous. I am so heavily burdened some days that I desperately need of the rest Jesus offers and nothing else will do. I am looking forward to learning to carry these burdens as Jesus carries them.
Press on ~ you are loved 💗
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