We are doers in a fast-moving world—crunching numbers, measuring distances, calculating risks, making plans and executing schedules on an hour by hour basis. Stress is a fact of life.
Then we hear the words from Jesus:
“Are you weary, carrying a heavy burden? Then come to me. I will refresh your life, for I am your oasis. Simply join your life with mine. Learn my ways and you’ll discover that I’m gentle, humble, easy to please. You will find refreshment and rest in me.” (Matthew 11:28-29 TPT)
What an invitation! Imagine, spending quality time with the Lord of the universe and drawing deep from His inexhaustible supply of wisdom and experience!
I love the Message Version translation of the passage:
“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” (Jesus)
Our Golden Opportunity
This is our opportunity now, more than ever before. Let’s call it a convenient conversion, a timely transition, a ready-made remedy for what ails us. We are driven people, and what drives us is not always wholesome.
We can trust Jesus. He is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
On a Twitter thread, someone asked the question “What are the most common reasons friendships fall apart?” Here are some of the real time answers that came back:
“Imbalance in give-and-take. One party drains the other.”
“Selfishness on the part of one, at the expense of the other. When people are committed mutually? They don’t fall apart.”
“One person decides to assert as the “Captain of the relationship.” Relegates the other to “sidekick” status. Then when the other rebels, it’s cause for detachment.”
“Lack of just spending time together and truly letting each other be themselves.”
That last one—misunderstanding—is huge. I believe in our relationship with Jesus, it comes into play. He doesn’t misunderstand us, of course. But we misunderstand him.
As hard as it might be for us to grasp, Jesus is far more interested in just spending time with us and enjoying our company than He is in watching us perform. We so often run around like chickens with our heads cut off and we fail to hear His inviting words “Come to me…”
Any parent of toddlers understands the dynamic. Toward the end of the evening, when bedtime beckons, these little people get extra energetic. They want to stay up. They press the envelope. A wise parent will say “Come to me” and carry the child to bed, storybook in hand, and read her to sleep. Or have a wonder-filled bedtime conversation. Or answer a myriad of questions that arise serendipitously because this little tike knows she has your full attention—and you have hers.
There is so much we can do to connect with Jesus. I believe it starts with a good regimen of devotional reading of prime the pump each day. Three of my favorites are:
“Imitation of Christ” by Thomas A’Kempis
“Streams In The Desert” compiled by Mrs. Charles Cowman
“My Utmost For His Highest” by Oswald Chambers
You can connect with these and many other great devotional resources at our Daily Devotional Portal.