Justin Tucker, LHC Worship Pastor
“Come to me, all of you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take up my yoke and learn from me, because I am lowly and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
When I was a kid I used to “help” my dad mow the yard. As he was cleaning up rocks and sticks in the yard, I was battling C.O.B.R.A. with my stick guns and rock hand grenades. He would run the weed eater and I would jump rope with the electrical cable connected to it. Tripping over it from time to time and unplugging it from the house. Finally it would be time to mow. I would go and stand at the mower with my hands on the halfway up bar and he would stand behind me holding down the throttle on the actual handle. He would push mow the yard as I would just walk between him and the mower. When we were done, Dad and I would celebrate the completion of our work with a great big, cold glass of water. Truth be told, Dad did all the work and I was just there. He never complained about the sticks and rocks winding back up in the yard, he never got on to me for unplugging the weed eater while he was working, he never made me feel like I was a tripping hazard or that I was in his way while he was doing all the pushing. I think he was just glad that his little boy wanted to be wherever he was and to him…that was worth working a little bit harder and maybe taking a little bit longer. Eventually my dad got a riding mower and my younger sister got rides while I became the one doing the push mowing and weed eating. AT the end though, we always had that glass of water together.
Whenever I read this passage, I can’t help but think of mowing the yard with my dad. He made the work easy, he made the pushing, for me, light. I think that Jesus used this story because it was something easy for his culture to relate to. Everyone knew how a team of oxen worked. A younger and weaker ox was partnered with a seasoned and strong ox so that it could learn how to do the work of plowing or milling. The older, stronger ox would carry the weight and the burden of the work until the younger ox could learn how to do the work as well. Eventually the younger ox would become the older ox and would do the same. Jesus is telling us that, in life, the work or the weight of this world is going to be entirely too much for us to handle and that when those times come, He will be there to do the heavy lifting. He will be there to carry the weight of whatever burden it is that we are carrying. Just as He carried the weight of the cross up Calvary, just as He carried the burden of sin and shame for all of humanity, He wants to carry the burdens of your life today. Psalm 55:22 says: “Cast your burden on the LORD, and he will sustain you; he will never allow the righteous to be shaken.” 1 Peter 5:6-7 says: “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, so that he may exalt you at the proper time, 7 casting all your cares on him, because he cares about you.” Jesus loves you in your mess and He loves you too much to leave you in it. So today whatever is troubling your heart, give it to Him. His shoulders are strong and His love is stronger.
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
Jesus, thank you for carrying my sin. Thank you for bearing my cross and being the sacrifice for my sins. Jesus, just as you carried my burdens then I release the burdens I carry now and I trust that You can handle them. Lord, sometimes this world gets too much to handle and I am so thankful that I have a loving and faithful Savior to rescue me again and again. Thank you! In Jesus’ name, amen.
MEMORY VERSE OF THE WEEK:
For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given;
and the government shall be upon his shoulder,
and his name shall be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.