“Come to me, all who are worn out and weighed down, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28)
I burnt out three times before I was forty. I worked harder than I could sustain, I accumulated unhealed emotional wounds, and I didn’t take proper care of myself.
After my last burnout, I made a solemn commitment to attend to my heart. And what my heart needed was rest.
Putting into practice Jesus’s teachings gave me that rest.
The work Jesus sets us to do is a light burden. It is restful work. It is good for the heart.
And the rest Jesus offers is something we can enjoy right away. We don’t have to wait. Even now, we have access to this rest—rest that renews our strength, that lifts our spirits, and that heals our wounds.
That this rest is already available means we don’t have to always be struggling and toiling. There is already a beautiful goodness in the world. We can just relax and let it in.
Jesus says, “Come to me and I will give you rest.”
Have you learned yet how to go to Jesus? Being quiet helps. Solitude helps.
I like to go out for a walk, leaving my phone and all distractions behind.
And as I go out my front door, I greet Jesus, acknowledging his presence. There is no need for many words. I just say, “Hello, Jesus, thank you for being here with me. I am worn out, and I’m coming to you. Please give me rest. I need it.”
And then I walk without thinking much about anything, letting my mind wander, and letting it also return from time to time to Jesus, remembering his presence and his compassion and his kindness to me.
The prince of this world wants us to work to exhaustion.
But Jesus gives us both good work and good rest, knowing we need both.