Matthew 11:28-30 – “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.  29 “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.  30 “For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”  NASB

I sat in a revival service years ago and heard the young minister waxing eloquent and describing life after you receive Christ in the most glowing of terms.  He told the audience that if they accepted Christ their troubles would be over and life would no longer be the difficult struggle that it had been but God would solve all their problems.  He went so far as to tell them that God would remove the thorns from the roses in their lives and life would be easy.  I was troubled by his imaging of the Christian Life because it gave false expectations to the audience.

I had not been a Christian long but had already learned that that statement might be a little exuberant and an overstatement of the Christian life, based on what I had already experienced and what I knew of the Word of God.  I appreciated His enthusiasm and well-meaning but was saddened by the thought of someone coming to Christ only to find that sometimes “Life is hard” and “all the thorns have not been removed from the roses” in life.

What Jesus did say is that if you are worn out, struggling, finding life difficult, and are finding the walk to be a heavy burden you can come to Him and He will give rest.  He will renew our strength like the eagles.  He will be with us and never leave us nor forsake us.  He will provide a door of escape if temptation becomes more than we can handle.  His statement to “take my yoke upon you” suggests that Life and this Christian life is not just a casual stroll through the daffodils of life but is labor. 

A yoke carries the image of oxen pulling a plow.  He also said, “learn from Me.”  In taking His yoke upon ourselves the learning from Him indicates that there is a process.  In that process, we are taught to handle life’s difficulties and not be overwhelmed by them rather than a pathway to “ease”.  

He described His character and demeanor as being gentle and humble in heart and that’s where He wants to take us and in so doing that is where we find “REST FOR OUR SOULS.”  It is in pulling the load, with Him, going through the struggles of life, with Him, and facing life’s temptations, trials, tests, and pitfalls, with Him that we find that “His strength is made perfect in weakness”. 

It is there that we find that we are “more than conquerors through Him.”  It is there that we find that “there is peace in the midst of the storm.”  It is not that we won’t have any problems face any difficulties, experience, any sadness, or tragedy but that we won’t face them alone!  Becoming a Christian doesn’t automatically remove all life’s problems it gives you strength, grace, power, a person to turn to who will walk you through each one of them with His tender hand of love, grace, and mercy. 

May the Lord bless you as you begin your day!

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