Rest

Dr. Ray Pritchard
Dr. Ray Pritchard

“Come to me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28).

Rest.
How does that sound exactly two weeks before Christmas?

If you’re like most people, you may feel a bit overwhelmed right now. Our daily schedule fills up before we wake up, the hours slip away, and our to-do list seems to grow longer all by itself.

If December doesn’t make you tired, you’re not doing it right.

That’s why these words of Jesus are so important. We need the rest he offers. We need a place where we can slow down and re-center our lives.

Few of us like to wait because it reminds us we’re not in control. We don’t like waiting in traffic, in line at the supermarket, at the airport, or when our computers don’t work fast enough.

People talk about having their plates too full, about living in the fast lane, about running a race even a rat couldn’t win. We want to slow down, but we’re afraid the world will fall apart if we do. One day we’ll all slow down—permanently. And the world will go right on without us.

The words of Jesus are for people like you and me. We need rest, but we don’t know it, or we can’t find it, or we’re afraid if we do slow down, the world will pass us by. I’m reminded of the words of Vance Havner, “If we don’t come apart and rest for awhile, we will simply come apart.”

Jesus doesn’t invite us to a church or a meeting or an online seminar. He invites us to come to him. He’s not asking us to add yet one more thing to our already overcrowded schedule.

If you feel tired and frustrated and overwhelmed right now, here is some good news. Jesus wants you to come to him. When you do, he will give you rest.

I can’t promise you that your day will get easier, but I do promise you’ll have the strength to face whatever comes your way.

There is nothing vague here. 
There is no room for hesitation.

Sometimes we say, “It’s time for a come to Jesus meeting.” That’s a wonderful idea. Come to Jesus and see what happens. You’ll be glad you did.

Lord Jesus, slow us down so that we can hear your voice. Help us to stop striving and learn to rest in you. Amen.

 Musical bonus: Andrea Bocelli and Mary J. Blige combine their powerful voices in this rendition of What Child is This?

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Originally published December 11, 2017.

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