Not knowing my own current very private struggles and burdens, my pastor read aloud these verses to the small group gathered last night in the church parlor: "Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light." (Matthew 11:28-30)
Brother Billy could not have spoken more timely words to my weary heart. Amazing, isn't it, how God's communicates the truths we need to hear from His Word, at just the right time, in just the right place?
Following is a repost from about 2 1/2 years ago - something of which I am grateful to be reminded. If you don't have time to read a bazillion words, scroll to the bottom and watch the video. You'll be blessed.
- originally posted July 19, 2011
I collapsed into bed at 11:45, exhausted from the day just spent and weary at the thought of another day to come. Physically and emotionally spent, too tired to even sleep.
The tears started, streaming into my pillow. Lord, I am so tired, I wept. I simply cannot bear all that You have laid on me at present. This yoke is too, too heavy...I don't know what prayer is like for you, but for me it goes kind of like this: I pray, silently "talking" through something with the consciousness that God is listening and cares about me. Then I wait. Then, I pray some more. Often, during those pauses, God brings a particular passage of Scripture to my mind. Sometimes, indeed, it seems we are having a conversation: my prayer, His Word, my question, His Word again in answer....
Last night, this was the conversation: Lord, I am so tired. I simply cannot bear all that You have laid on me at present. This yoke is too heavy!
Empty silence, and then...
Camille, take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for you soul. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
No, Lord, no! Your yoke is NOT easy! This burden is NOT light! I continued weeping, feeling crushed under a heavy weight.
Lord? Are you listening?
Just silent darkness. I wracked my brain. What was God trying to teach me? My burden truly did feel heavy, overwhelmingly heavy. And yet I was confident that I was having to bear it because of God's will for my life at the present. How could Christ say that this burden He had given me was light? Light compared to what, Lord?!
Christ has borne my yoke and carried my burden. He has suffered the just wrath of our holy God. He has known the absolute darkness of separation from His heavenly Father. That...that was mine to bear, my burden, my yoke...unfathomable suffering and isolation. My burden forever.
Instead, Christ has given to me this other burden, under which I find my weak self buckling: to work for my family, to school my children, to pray for my church and its leaders, to grieve with the sick, to know the heartbreak of strained and broken relationships, to have too many demands and too little time, too many needs and too few resources. And He has promised to stand with me through all of these burdens. He gives the Holy Spirit to strengthen and encourage me - and to bring Scripture to mind when I need it most. He has secured for me the everlasting love of God the Father. He has promised me an eternity of joy in His presence when I am finally free to lay these burdens down. Lay them down forever.
My burden seemed too heavy, until I considered the one I had given in exchange for it. Now I find that, while this life's burden is difficult and truly exhausting, No, it is not so very heavy. Not so very heavy at all.
3 months ago