advent lettering

O Come All Ye Faithful

Come to Jesus

Today's Reading

Matthew 11:28-30

“Come to Me, all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”

These are amazing words. Too often, we read them and never stop to feel their weight wash over us.

Think about it…every one of us carry the heavy burdens of life, the crushing blows of disappointment, the immense weight of failures every day, yet we are called to run to the Messiah.

And what is His response? Rest….but it is beyond rest. He provides us with His yoke. We exchange the burdens of life and take on the freedom of Christ. We let go of our own worthless wisdom and cling to the everlasting teachings of Christ.

Have you ever taken a look back at the context of this particular statement by Jesus? Interestingly, it isn’t when He is with children or with a group of those He is healing. It isn’t connected to His Sermon on the Mount, and it isn’t told when He is describing the lost sheep, coin, or son.

He says this immediately following a cursing of the cities that refused to repent. Jesus lived among them, performed miracles, spoke the very Words of the Father, and yet still Korazin, Bethsaida, and Capernaum refused to believe. They marched along in their unwillingness to see their burden and need for a Messiah.

And Jesus calls them out.

He then prays to the Father and thanks Him for hiding from the “wise” the truth of their burden and instead revealing that truth to the “little children.”

Christ isn’t saying that only children are able to understand and those who have brilliant minds are kept from the deep truths of God.  What He is saying is that if you want to understand the deep truths of God, you have to put aside the pride that often comes with having the brilliant mind, established career, comfortable lifestyle, or independent living, and instead come to the Father with no pretense, pride, or privilege. You go to Him as a child goes to their parents, asking for help and knowing that they will always answer.

This week, we will be looking through the stories of men and women who did just that. Each person—John the Baptist, Andrew, Matthew, the Centurion, the woman who anointed Jesus, and the woman at the well—approached Christ as little children, handing their burdens over to Him, and He gave them rest.

Unfortunately, too often our lives look more like Korazin or Capernaum than they do Andrew or Matthew. In our pride, we like to deny our burdens and refuse to accept help, believing that we already have the rest we need.

Of course, we are all very clever in how we do it. Some find their rest in their possessions, titles, access to power, or privileged positions. They claim to have no burdens because of how much they have.

Others wallow in their “burdens,” blaming everyone else for the troubles that surround them but never really see the real burden is their refusal to seek the Lord.

Some carry the baggage of failures that linger for years and years, while many just cling to the baggage of habitual sin that we pass off as just “bad habits” or “personality quirks.”

But if we were honest, and I mean really, gut-level honest, we all see that burden. It is a weight…immense weight…a weight that doesn’t go away.

For those we explore this week, they felt the weight. John knew his role because he saw the brokenness of the world. Andrew had been seeking something, anything to fill the void in his life. Matthew was a wealthy made whose fortune was made on the backs of others. The Centurion recognized that his gods could do nothing compared to the True God. The woman with the alabaster jar broke down over the sin that enveloped her life. And for the woman at the well, all Jesus had to do was just point out the burden, and the walls fell and she ran to Him, bringing others with her.

So what about you?  How will you approach Christ this Christmas season, or even this week? Will you look like these individuals who encountered the Living Christ as little children? Or in your pride will you remain unmoved and unchanged, marching on with your burden and missing Jesus?

Previous Article Next Article