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The Great Exchange: Burdens for Rest

rest for the weary_t

Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 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. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light. Matthew 11:28-30

The word labor here can be illustrated by the story of a man who has a great load laid upon him, which he must carry to a certain place: every step he takes reduces his strength, and renders his load the more oppressive. However, the load must be carried using his utmost exertions to reach the place where it is to be laid down. It is only logical for a kind person, seeing his distress, to offer him help to ease his load, that he may enjoy rest. This is exactly what Jesus offers.

Back in the day, when training a new animal (such as an ox) to plow, farmers would often yoke it to an older, stronger, more experienced animal who would bear the burden and guide the young animal through his learning. In other words, Jesus is the one extending an invitation to help this person with a heavy burden. He is much wiser, stronger, experienced to handle this kind of thing.
This invitation is one that none but God can extend. He alone has the amazing abilities to comfort, to inspire and give hope.  The invitation is directed to those who are burdened by something. It could be the burden of Sin, sickness, suffering or sadness. It doesn’t matter what it is – He wants you to come to Him because He can give you rest.
He calls each one to come, take, learn, and rest. not just to get and go. Let’s unpack this:
  • Come discover my gentleness – my words are words of healing, my care is tender and soothing. Come and discover my Servant’s heart – a heart that serves, gives and never takes, have your interest at heart. Come and discover my rest – rest from fear, distress, guilt, emotional baggage and sin. Come by faith believing and trusting that He is able to do what He said He would do.
  • Take. There are some things that are for the taking. This is one of those things. Cease the opportunity, it is in great supply. Don’t hesitate, take it. No need to be embarrassed. Notice, it is available in full supply, but you need to want it, ask for it.
  • Learn. You just don’t come take and leave. You must learn to become loving, tenders, gentle to lead others to Him and comfort them in their time of need. This is a life long journey, because those who settle just for quick fixes never really grow in their relationship and knowledge of him and how he works.
  • Rest. There is a place in God where we rest from all our toils. Rest is available all day long 24/7. It is free of charge and there for all kinds of needs. The only place you can find complete rest is in Jesus the one who extends the invitation.
These are the things that qualify Him to make that bold invitation.  He is saying – “I am wiser, stronger, I am more experienced. Just come unto me and I will take off your shoulders and off your mind the things that weight heavy – and I will give you rest.
This entry was posted in: Devotion


There are three things I think about every moment of everyday... they consume me deeply. How to: 1. Refine my theological understanding 2. sharpen my ethical rigor 3. and heighten my devotional intensity. These are the things I write about. Welcome you to my blog... Join me on this incredible journey of exploration and discovery of all the things God has in store for His children. Join by following or subscribing. I appreciate your thoughts, comments and friendship. Walter


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