At the end of Matthew 11, Jesus says, “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.”
I have always read this as a passage for the weary, worn out ragamuffins who are in a spiritual desert and desperate for Jesus just to survive. I have been that ragamuffin, and this scripture has spoken to me during those seasons in my life.
God has recently put these verses back into my path in multiple ways and confirmed that it is my verse for this year. But I am no longer in a spiritual desert. I am not weary. I am not in the valley. And yet…
As I live into how God has created me, as I embrace responsibilities larger than the past, as I climb the mountain, I find that I am more desperate for God than ever before. Whether crawling on the valley floor or climbing jagged rocks ascending a mountain, I equally need God so that I do not die and live into all that He has for me.
The tension of embracing responsibility and surrendering to God is palpable to me these days. I rigorously endeavor to be faithful with this responsibility, but am coming to realize that the burden is not mine to bear. Yes, I need to pick up my cross and follow Jesus. I need to take on his yoke and venture forward following Jesus. But as I accept God’s yoke, I do not bear the burden of it; that is for Jesus alone.