Matthew 11:28-30 “Come to Me all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest. 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. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.
Where does your mind go when you read this verse? What picture do you see when you contemplate the weight of its truth? God is inviting ALL who are weary, tired, worn out, overwhelmed, carrying loads too heavy for human endurance, holding things far too painful, too horrific, too devastating, to find rest in Him. He beckons all to climb up on His lap and allow Him to shoulder the burden, to not just ease the load but to completely handle it, giving rest and peace that goes far deeper than our human intellect can comprehend. He wants us to stop striving and rest.
I was sitting in my chair with my coffee early one morning before heading off to work, going over the list of things I had to accomplish that day. The dishes, laundry, floors, dusting, windows, scrubbing dirty fingerprints off the appliances and walls….and doors and mouldings…packing away summer clothes and going through out grown items, finding our winter things in preparation for the cold days that we were entering. That list led to the other list of things I desired to do but had to put to the side because the things needing my attention trumped the things that I felt were my calling. The problem was I needed to be at work.
Throw into this mix, we are a homeschooling family. In a new province. New rules to abide by. My habit of notifying proper authorities of my intent, late wasn’t going to fly this year. And my ‘fly by the seat of my pants’ attitude wasn’t either. I needed a plan. I needed goals. I needed a vacation after being awake for only 30 minutes. I was completely overwhelmed. When I get in that state I begin to replay past events that only add to my stress.
It doesn’t matter to God what our situation is, He is offering rest to us all.
That morning as I sat in the chair, fighting back tears of anxiety and trying deep breathing exercises to calm my racing thoughts, God spoke to my heart. He calmed me. These things I have in front of me are all important in my eyes, the eyes of my family, the eyes of the Department of Education, and they really need to be done, but I don’t go it alone. He orders my day. He directs my steps. He helps me, and you, to organize our time, to be good stewards of the hours we’re given.
I’ve also been in overwhelming situations that good planning can’t get me out of. I’ve lived through the sickness of a child, the days upon end in a pediatric intensive care unit, not knowing what the end of the story would be, completely helpless to do anything at all to change the circumstances. Those are the days when I really learned to ‘rest’ in Him because I had no other choice. Waves of unexplainable peace would wash over me at times when my mind wanted me to panic at the uncertainty.
There are people going through valleys so deep carrying burdens so great you don’t think you’ll ever make it out. Let Him not only carry the baggage, let Him carry you. You have no idea how you got there, you have no idea when the storm will be end, but God does. He wants to bring peace to your situation, rest in the middle of that storm.
What I picture when reading this verse: a small child, in the lap of his giant father, with arms wrapped around him giving complete protection while all around the clouds are angry and winds are raging. The child sleeps soundly knowing he is safe and secure in the lap of his daddy.