“Casting all our care upon him, for he careth for you.” (I Peter 5:7)
Randy and his mom stepped into the hospital elevator, and he pushed button 5 to take them to the 5th floor, where Grandpa Jim’s room was. Randy normally liked elevators, but not this hospital one. Grandpa Jim’s cancer was getting worse every day, and Randy was pretty sad and scared about it. He could feel gravity weighing him down as the elevator carried them up, and he thought to himself, “That’s just how my heart feels right now. All weighted down.”
Has your heart ever felt heavy with sadness or worry because of the things going on around you? Have you ever been afraid or frustrated because of people around you? Randy was sad and scared about his grandpa’s pain and possible death. Maybe you have burdens that are hard for you to bear. If you have ever felt like your heart might break if it has to take one more thing, the God of the Bible is the One to Whom you should turn. He invites you to take your worry and sadness and fear and frustration to Him.
Did you know Jesus Christ calls us to come to Him when we are burdened down with cares? In Matthew 12:28-30, Jesus Himself says, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart; and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden light.”
Do you know what a “yoke” is? A yoke is a wooden frame to fasten two work animals together. A yoke joins or unites two horses or two oxen, so that those two will work together to pull a wagon or a plow. It spreads the weight across two sets of shoulders instead of one. If one animal is weaker than the other, the other pulls harder to keep up with the work load. Once they are working together, they can get the job done.
Does it seem odd to you that Jesus is calling already-tired laborers and people with burdens to come and put on a “yoke”? But the yoke of Jesus is a lightweight yoke. He says His yoke is easy to bear. Jesus is telling us that when we are afraid, or have something to do that seems impossible to us, we can rest if we are connected to Him. If we are walking with Jesus and going in the direction He wants us to go, we do not have to bear any of our burdens alone. The load Jesus has borne for us is heavier than anything we could ever endure. And there is no load God cannot bear. He wants us to know that He will bear the heavier load when we are “yoked” to Him. For Him, the load is easy and we can find rest.
Today, if you feel burdened by something that is happening in your life, take some time to think about what kind of God we have. Imagine that you are fastening Jesus’ “yoke” to your neck and ask Jesus to help you. Be “yoked” together with him and give Him all your cares. He promises that, with Him, the burden is bearable and you will have rest.
God invites us to rely on Him when our burdens are too much to bear.
» Is my heart weighed down by things I cannot handle?
» Have I accepted Jesus’ invitation to come to Him with my burdens?
» Am I walking in step with Jesus, trusting in His strength, and obeying Him?