“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 us light.” ~ Matthew 11:28-30 NIV
Not too long ago, my sister and I were talking about the stresses that come up now that we are adults. A few years ago, school was our stress. Now it’s jobs and money. My sister shared that just when one problem goes away, another one shows up and so she has no rest. And that’s true. That’s what life is like. I don’t like the feeling of always having stresses one after the other, but we will constantly have things thrown at us whether they’re temptations, financial situations, relationship problems, etc. Always. God knows this. He always knows what we are going through. And He doesn’t want us to make these as burdens and to have us carry them alone.
Lately, I’ve been into watching videos of missionary families and what life is like for them as missionaries. I was shocked to learn that the stresses that I deal with do not compare with what they deal with almost every day. Many missionaries, if not all, go as volunteers and so they must depend on God for money. Schools are not always available for the children of missionary families and so they must depend on God for the education of the children. Safety. Food. Clothing. Life-threatening diseases. The difference between them and I is that they depend on God for all those things. They come to God so that God will take on their burdens and lighten their load. And when they speak of their experiences and how God has been faithful all the way, there is a noticeable calmness about their stature. They seemed so relaxed. At first, it might seem like they have never experienced any stresses, but in reality, they have suffered and gone through so much that they had to look to God, and so they have allowed God to be the source of everything. As a result, they radiate peace.
Matthew 11:28-30 is not only about God giving us rest. The act of coming to the Lord is us depending on Him and trusting in Him. We should be free to go to the Lord, and Him calling us is an invitation. The reason for this invitation is then so we can find rest amidst all the stresses, and burdens, and hurt, and pain, and suffering in life. It is possible.
David, a man who freely shared his burdens and stresses documented them in the book of Psalms. Many of his writings share how distressed he was in certain times. He vents and goes into great poetic detail of his current situations. But something unique about David is that he always brought it back to the Lord and gave Him praise. David has had people attack him (Psalm 54:3), he has had sorrow in his heart as his enemy triumphs over him (Psalm 13:2), his enemies have increased and so he is greatly distressed (Psalm 25:18-19), and much more. However, with all that he is struggling with, he comes to God and reveals His nature. God is his refuge and strength (Psalm 46:1), his rock (Psalm 28:1), his light and salvation (27:1), and the stronghold of his life (Psalm 27:1). And these are only a few of the many struggles he shares and the attributes of God.
For when we come to God and allow Him to take on our burdens, we will not be disappointed. Our Creator knows us best, and so He has invited us to come to Him.