“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 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. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30
The religious leaders of Jesus’s day take the law very seriously. After the fall of Jerusalem and the resulting exile, religious Jews don’t want to experience that ever again. So they devote themselves to following the law entirely. But they don’t think following the law is enough. They then add even more laws to ensure they don’t break the law. These “extra” laws place a burden of minutia on the people. In this atmosphere, Jesus speaks the words of our November Memory Verse. He tells the people God’s way is one of rest and not a burden. If they follow him, they can find the rest they seek.
While we aren’t living under Jewish religious law, many of us are weary and burdened. Perhaps we come from a religious tradition focused on rules and earning God’s favor. Maybe we’re burdened by the weight of maintaining relationships in our divided culture. Or we could face the weariness of attempting to live up to who we think someone wants us to be. Our burden might be chasing meaning through sports, success or experiences. Jesus presents a different way. He lived, taught, died on the cross and rose again to offer us real life both now and in the future.
Jesus encourages us to yoke ourselves to him and learn from him. A yoke was a piece of wood that paired two oxen to pull a plow or cart. Jesus tells us to partner with him, go where he is going and let him take the lead. We learn from him how to live the life he created us for. We learn to trust him with the burdens of life. Jesus isn’t promising that everything will be easy, but we can have confidence that if we go with him, he loves us and has our best in mind.
IN YOUR CHAIR TIME TODAY
Begin to memorize this month’s verse. As you memorize, consider what is weighing you down and how you can trust God with it.
2022 BIBLE MEMORY PRACTICE
Develop spiritual roots and tap in the power of God’s word by memorizing monthly a Bible verse! View previous verses at beyondtheweekend.org/biblememorypractice.
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 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. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
Download a printable PDF of the BTW week here.