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His yoke is easy and his burden is light

“Come to me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” — Matthew 11:28-30.
Many of us have heard those scriptures quoted often, but how often have we really taken the time to meditate on them? After God spoke the words “rest and praise” to me on New Year’s Eve, these verses have become a focal point of study for me. It is amazing how many truths we can glean from meditating on God’s word and asking him to give us revelation of it. I’m going to share some of what God has revealed to me.
In that first verse Jesus tells all who labor and are heavy laden to come to him to get rest. Who was the audience that Jesus was addressing at that time? It was the Jews. What were the Jews under? The law.
The law was about laboring to perform for God. It was about doing good to try to earn God’s favor. The law was meant to break people down to make them see their own imperfections and how much they were in need of a Savior (Galatians 3:24).
Let me pose some questions: Have you ever labored for God and become burdened down by it? Have you ever worked and worked to try to please God but always seem to come up short? Have you ever been beaten up by religion?
I can answer yes to all of the above. When we have these thoughts or attitudes, we are reverting back to the old covenant way of doing things, not realizing that covenant has passed away (Hebrews 8:13, Galatians 3:25).
I believe Jesus is saying to come to him, all who feel like that, because he is changing the order of things. He is not about adding more laws but about releasing us from the law to receive his spirit of freedom (Second Corinthians 3:17).
Freedom to go live in sin? Of course not. Freedom to not have to read our Bibles anymore? Absolutely not. But freedom from that never-ending struggle of working to please him.
Jesus didn’t say “come to me and I’ll give you more work” or “come to me when your performance is at its peak.” No, he tells us to come to him with all our burdens and works, and he will give us rest. We need to stop performing for God and simply start seeking him instead because he wants us to have rest.
Rest comes from understanding his love and the price Jesus paid for us on the cross. Rest comes through believing Jesus went before us to finish the work so we could receive it by faith. It does not come from performing in order to please him.
He says to take his yoke upon us, not the yoke of the law, and learn from him because his yoke is easy and his burden is light. “The law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ” (John 1:17).
He wants us to tap into this grace that he has already provided. His yoke is not heavy and burdensome like the law was, but it is light and easy. Why oh why do we get this order mixed up? Why do we think the Christian walk, this living for Jesus life, is burdensome and cumbersome?
Am I saying the Christian life is easy? No, “all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution” (Second Timothy 3:12). But it is not this oppressive, demanding yoke that we have made it out to be.
We need to learn from Jesus and the glory of the new covenant. He is gentle, not harsh, supplying for us, not demanding from us. The more we learn from Jesus about what he has already done for us, the more peace and rest we will have.
“Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and our Savior Jesus Christ.” — 2 Peter 1:2.
Sometimes I get so consumed with working for God and striving to get more revelation that I get out of rest. The harder I make the yoke and the heavier the burden, the less I receive. But when I realize his yoke is easy and burden is light and that he wants to speak to me more than I want to receive it, I am able to relax and receive from him. The same goes for any area of your life.
Know that Jesus has gone before you to make provision and to carry the heavy load on your behalf. Be still and receive his rest today.
Amber can be reached at amberdeemiller32@gmail.com">amberdeemiller32@gmail.com or through her AmberRiceMiller Facebook page.

Published: February 5, 2018
New Article ID: 2018180209985