Have you ever been in a season of your life where you feel extremely overwhelmed? It’s like everything seems to be crashing down on you all at once. You feel frustration setting camp in your heart with no desire to leave soon. This is how life can become when we are not resting in God.
There was a period of my life when I felt so overburdened with life’s issues and felt like I was drowning. The spirit of oppression was trying to settle in but at just the right moment, the Word of God spoke to me. Through a simple yet powerful statement, He said through the voice of Dallas, from The Chosen, “Come to me all who are weary…”.
Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.”Matthew 11:28-30
This was the theme of the final episode of season three (3) and pretty much the entire season. This statement lingered in my mind. You know this moment when someone says something and that one thing which was said is highlighted? This was that moment for me. I knew then that God was speaking. I had been stressed out and completely frustrated for a whole week. I had been trying to figure out how to pursue Christ in my “doing”. Yet Chirst was calling me to Him; to Rest.
This message lingered on throughout the week. His call to me remained the same. He kept on calling me away from the pressures of life into His rest. Repeatedly, I would see the verse and knew that it was His invitation to come to Him. He was calling me to be refreshed in Him.
So often we get caught up in the “doing”, thinking that all the “work” we do is really what He desires when He really just wants our heart. He just wants us to stop and rest in Him. That’s why he said to the people in Matthew 11 to come to Him. The rules laid down by the Jewish leaders were too much for them to manage. They were becoming increasingly frustrated. To them according to the leaders this was the right way to live for God. It brought honor to Him they thought, but Christ came to set things right. These standards were actually a misunderstanding of what Christ truly desired. He told them to come to Him because He could see how burdened they were. They needed to unlearn some of the things they were taught. He was willing to teach them the right way to serve Him while still finding rest in Him. The work they would carry out would be light and easy. There would be no more stress, no more depression, no more oppression. They would operate in peace while on mission for God.
I decided to spend time with Him, simply just abiding in His Word. The more I took time to linger in His presence the less of the need I felt to do other activities which I thought were necessary. Sometimes, we engage in too many activities when all He desires is for us to go away with Him.
As time went on I felt myself falling back into worry when other issues arised. I remember one morning I woke up and felt so burdened and defeated but then I remembered His Word; a Psalm of David which stated,”Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.” Psalm 43:5. I almost spent the entire day distorted. However, the Word of God was quickened within me and the Spirit of God began to encourage me. I began to speak the Word of God over my situation and command my morning. The more I did this the more I realsied my countenance shifted from gloomy to hopefulness. It’s the enemy’s desire to keep us bound and frustrated, in that way we will forget who we are.
I saw how He used these moments in my life to plunge me into His call. His tender voice whispered to me “come to me and rest”. I found myself again diving deeper into quiet times with Him. He called me deeper into prayer, worship and bible study. What this did was arm me so that I would be able to stand against the attacks of the enemy. When we get so caught up in other activities we lose focus on what truly matters.
You may think that Christ requires a ton of work from you and that would put you in right standing with Him but that’s not the truth. I could imagine the frustration on the face of Christ when He saw the strain, anxiety, tension, pressure and distress burdening the people. He knew there was a better way and that’s why just like He did to them, He is imploring you to come to Him. Come abide in His presence where He will anoint you afresh and prepare you the right way to live for Him. Don’t get caught up in the “doing” and get distracted because that’s just where the enemy wants you. Stay alert and in the presence of God so that you will have everything you need to stand and fight.
Whatever you are doing which you think God called you to but is burdening you, give it over to Christ. He wants you to come to Him and lay it at His feet. He wants you to surrender all to Him because He wants to teach you the right way to live for Him. Take His yoke upon you. He is humble and gentle at heart. He isn’t going to wear you out but rather He will help you carry it. In the process you will find rest for your soul.