By Deonne McCausland
Today’s Reading: Matthew 11:1-30
Key Verse: Matthew 11:28
Right now, I am the last person who should be writing about rest. Just this afternoon, I ended up “closing my eyes” while responding to emails (obviously not very riveting stuff), and only opened them in accordance with boys yelling after the puppy who chewed a blue highlighter all over the light coloured carpet. Last night, I attempted to watch a recorded episode of This Is Us (which is riveting), only to rewind the end 3 times because I kept falling asleep and missing it (I still don’t know the ending).
I typically go to bed well after midnight and while I should get up at 6:30, I instead hit snooze at least 3 times. A pattern is emerging. I multitask throughout the day while drinking coffee and forgetting a great many details. My to-do list never gets done (my husband says it’s ridiculously unrealistic) and therefore overwhelms me. I want to be available to my family and friends and so push the list aside to “deal with” the more immediate need of a child or the heart of a friend. I take on the burdens of others and maybe the cares of the world and neglect the things that bring me joy as an unnecessary luxury in the black hole of chores. You’ve got your own lists and your own soul rest suckers (and I’m not referring to the children or husbands).
Our world tells us the solution is to make better lists, set loftier goals and prioritize yourself, but I’m not convinced that’s the answer. That’s why these verses in Matthew about rest stand out to me today, during this Lenten season of drawing near to Christ in dependency. If I look inward to try and fix myself, my old patterns just re-emerge in time. If I look to others to commiserate with, I might feel understood and therefore better for a moment, but no real solution has been implemented. If however, I come to Jesus with my weariness and my burdens, and take his yoke upon me (meaning that I follow his example and abide in him), I will find soul rest. The Bible tells me so. Come to Jesus, in prayer, in worship, in the Word. Be strengthened, be filled, be restored by the Holy Spirit living in you.
Thus says the LORD: “Stand by the roads, and look, and ask for the ancient paths, where the good way is; and walk in it, and find rest for your souls… Jeremiah 6:16