Matthew 11:28 – 30 says that we should go to the Lord when we are weary and need rest. It speaks of Jesus’ yoke. What does this mean? Well, a yoke is a harness that was used to attach a piece of equipment to an ox for it to pull behind him. When we take on the Lord’s yoke, He does the heavy lifting. He does the hard work, so we can rest. Why? Because sometimes we just need the rest. Our God is our refuge and our strength. He takes on our burdens for us. Sometimes we get caught up in all the ‘life’ things happening around us, we don’t even notice what has become acceptable pressure for us. How does fear surface in your daily routine? How does insecurity pop up its head? We should be on guard that the evil one is hoping we find our value in what we do, how many things we cross of our To Do list – even good things. Are you someone that feels they must tell folks around them what all you did that day to feel accomplished? Whose measuring you? Who is telling you that you didn’t measure up if you didn’t get everything done that day? Who is saying you are the sum of your list you accomplished that day? That’s not from God.
I remember when I had finished writing my first book, I felt completely empty. I thought I would feel, well, just totally wonderful afterward. I thought I would be ready to write more, talk to more people, and distribute more books. What I found was nothing. I was almost numb really. I would go to church and sort of zone out. I would sing but not feel it. I would hear the sermons, feel the love of others, but not give back. This went on for a while before I started asking questions about it. Someone said that maybe I just needed the rest. Maybe God was helping me to rest, even when I was too tired to notice I needed the rest. Once I heard this, I knew that’s what was happening. I knew my worth was from God. He’s already approved me. He is where my value comes from, not from what I do. Writing the book was meant to bring me joy while I was learning to write for Him. I took time off before starting to write my second book. I went into this one praying for peace. I prayed for the joy of the Lord to come through me as I met with people who were buying the book. I prayed relationships would be enhanced with the Lord, including mine among those who were reading the book. I have heard so many stories from folks reading my book that have given me such joy. The rest I took after the first book, and the rest I took while writing the second book allowed me to enjoy the process, while still worshipping and serving God. The pressures of our day, even with good things, should not overtake our ability to serve God, to worship God or spend less time with God in prayer. This should be a great reason for some serious, all-in kind of prayer. The kind where you cry out to God that you know you need Him to show you how to make your schedule less jam-packed. The kind where you beg God to give you rest and have peace about it (not guilt). The kind where you see why God says you should take a day to rest and worship Him, to devote your day to Him, even if nobody else in your house will go with you. Go ahead. He’s listening.