Weariness and Rest
By Rev Victor Neill
‘Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden [burdened], and I will give you rest’ Matthew 11 v 28
Do you feel weary and burdened? Are you Covid-19 weary? Weary of the restrictions which prevent normal family and Church life and that interaction with friends and that ability to shop for pleasure rather than just for necessities? Or perhaps it may be that you have become weary and burdened with the physical restrictions which the passing years have brought. But whatever it is that has made you weary, burdened and downhearted, let me share the Good News that there is Someone who cares about where you are right now in life! He cares that you are weary and burdened, downhearted, dispirited and He does not want you to struggle and face alone the issues which are getting you down. Instead, He wants to give you fresh hope and a rest of mind and soul!
It was of course the Saviour Himself who gave the wonderful invitation that is found in the words of our text. He longs to intervene and bring help and blessing into your perhaps increasingly difficult situation. But the Saviour, the Lord Jesus, will not come into your situation against your will - you must ask Him into your situation and hand it over to Him admitting you cannot effectively deal with it. However, first and foremost you must ask the Saviour to deal with your most pressing issue, if thus far you have not permitted Him to deal with it – that of your sin! That means acknowledging you need His forgiveness and being willing to turn from your sin and give yourself to Him, asking Him to be your Lord and Saviour.
In itself, the forgiveness of sin with the resulting peace will lift a great burden and in addition you will also discover that life will take on a new focus – despite the fact that some of the problems may not be removed . But when that is the case then grace will be given (grace - that God given help and ability that will enable you to cope). 'My grace is sufficient for thee, for my strength is made perfect in weakness‘ (2nd Corinthians 12 v 9). There also will be a new learning curve ‘take my yoke upon you and learn of me ‘ (11 vs 29). The yoke that is spoken of here is not of slavery, for it means willingly submitting to One who knows best and constantly learning from the Greatest Teacher of all!
Considering what we have been thinking about, we could well turn the verse of a Hymn into a prayer.
‘When doubts and fears arise, teach me thy way! When storms o’erspread the skies, teach me thy way! Shine through the cloud and rain, through sorrow toil and pain; make thou my pathway plain: teach me thy way‘