Our Life Group watch a DVD last night with Lisa TerKeurst called “Uninvited” Living Loved When You Feel Less than, Left out, and Lonely. We finished reading the book the end of July and have chosen to do the DVD series and Workbook for the next six weeks.
One of the first scriptures that came on the screen was Matthew 11:28-30. Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. As we read that scripture I felt almost a sigh from these lovely women, and myself as we were reminded of His care and grace. I am glad they let it linger on the screen for a bit while she shared her heart.
We all need to be reminded that He has a rest for us. The rest of the scripture instructs on the how we do this: 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. I love this scripture for the grace it gives, the hope it gives and the reminder of who we are serving.
But in order to experience the rest he talks about, we need to do the whole scripture. First we need to go to Him, in the midst of our labor and busyness with our burdens and cares go to Him. Hebrews 4:16 So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most. Sometimes our own fears, sins and feelings of inadequacy prevents us from coming to Him when we need it most. I have found that if I go to Him before I get super overwhelmed my rest and balance is restored much quicker. But, if I struggle it out on my own first, He is still there waiting for me.
So we come to Him and the next part is crucial to growth: we take time to learn from Him. Even if it takes us many attempts to learn something, keep going back, for He is a patient, loving caring teacher. He is a persistent teacher, however and will continue to help us until we learn what He wants us to know. He does not leave us in the learning. He abides with us, as we abide with Him.
If we want to remain in this rest, we must accept His yoke (will, purpose and Lordship). It is in the yoking up with Him that we set ourselves to really learn who He is. He will show us how easy it is and how light His burden is for us. When we fight the yoke, it seems hard, difficult and too much to bear. But if we relax and follow His lead and settle into the “unforced rhythms of grace” (Matthew 11:29 Msg) we receive the grace to live our lives with a rest in our hearts which is His part of the gift He purchased for us on the cross.
Father, I ask that you move in our hearts today and reveal any areas where we have not taken your yoke so we are living less than you desire. I choose to take your yoke and set myself once again to learn from you. Thank you for helping us all to choose your way of rest, in Jesus Name, Amen