At that moment Jesus said:
My Father, Lord of heaven and earth, I am grateful that you hid all this from wise and educated people and showed it to ordinary people.26 Yes, Father, that is what pleased you.
27 My Father has given me everything, and he is the only one who knows the Son. The only one who truly knows the Father is the Son. But the Son wants to tell others about the Father, so that they can know him too.
28 If you are tired from carrying heavy burdens, come to me and I will give you rest.29 Take the yoke I give you. Put it on your shoulders and learn from me. I am gentle and humble, and you will find rest. 30 This yoke is easy to bear, and this burden is light.” Matthew 11:25-30 (CEV)
It is Friday and for some it is the end of a work week. For others, it is the beginning or the middle of their work schedule and Friday may even be a “hump” day. And then there are those of us who own our own business and we feel blessed when we only work 5 ½ or 6 days! Seriously, I do feel blessed to have a job and one which often does not seem like work.
This Scripture is very familiar, at least the part about coming and getting rest from Jesus. But today let’s look at the context of that familiar passage.
John the Baptist’s followers came to Jesus asking Him if He really was the Messiah. John was in jail and maybe he and his disciples needed some encouragement, to know they had done their job, proclaim the Messiah was coming! And Jesus gave them an encouraging answer to take back to John. And then let the church leaders who had “dissed” John have it! He told them it was God’s good pleasure to reveal His truth to little children and ordinary people. And His truth was His Son here on earth.
The Son came, not to be served, but to take the heavy burdens from these ordinary people. And one of their heavy burdens was their failed attempts to keep all the Law so that they were in a right relationship with God. And the Pharisees made it even more impossible with their dogma and swindling they heaped on the people. Jesus came to remove the un-Godly burdens and sins that keep us separated from God and replace them with a yoke that would bind them to God, making their life burdens light.
And Jesus is still doing that. If I am slogging through my work week like an overworked oxen, I need to toss off my way of carrying all the “stuff” and hitch myself up to Jesus. How do I do that? The same way a good pair of oxen can carry a heavy load for however long – by spending time together to learn how the lead ox pulls and following his example. In practical terms it means spending time every day praying and listening, worshiping with music, and turning our burdens and concerns over to Jesus who loves us so very much. If that seems simple, it is but it requires a commitment and desire to move closer to my LORD. Start now. It’s time to rest.
Come unto Me written and sung by Nicole C. Mullen