Refreshed As You Worship
The rhythm of life has a steady beat. Some days it feels like the beat is speeding up with no chance for a slower pace on the horizon. Do you ever feel that your life is moving faster than you’ve planned or even care for it to be? Do you ever strug
gle in filtering through what to do from day-to-day and how to spend your time? Do you ever question and attempt to qualify, “Is this me being busy” verses, “Is this me being productive?”
In Matthew 11: 28-30 (NIV), Jesus said, (28) “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. (29) Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. (30) For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
So what does it mean to REST? Is it lying around all day in your pajamas and doing absolutely nothing, except maybe eating your favorite comfort food or watching a good movie? Do we only perceive REST as a state of inactivity; the absence of work? Perhaps it would be beneficial to shift our perception from not only understanding REST as a noun, but to also embracing REST as a verb.
In the passage in Matthew 11, Jesus offers the kind of rest that means to recover strength, and to experience ease and REFRESH that is directly related to being connected to Him. The rest He speaks of is not something we construct or acquire by our own efforts. It can only be received from God. He alone GIVES us His REST when we COME to Him. The acts of receiving, relying, and remaining are the verb forms of RESTING in God.
RESTING in the presence of God brings assurance to us. There is no space for worry, troubles, or anything that would disturb our peace. God wants us to totally depend upon Him. According to the text, we must be willing to do three things:
Come to Him
Receive His Rest
Take His yoke (balance) and learn of Him
Isn’t’ it interesting that God’s yoke can be compared to a pair of scales? It’s like saying that when we are yoked with Him, we have balance in our lives. Did you know that you can do all three of these things when you go before God in worship?
In order to keep up with the multiple rhythms of life, it requires that we daily come to Jesus, We must daily receive His REST. There we find His easy yoke and light burdens. We find REST for our weary souls. His REST is a REFRESHING that renews life within us!
I love the Message translation of Matthew 11:28-30, it says:
“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.”