Psalm 103:1-4, 8, 10
Come to me … and I will give you rest. (Matthew 11:28)
Do you feel restless as Christmas approaches? If so, these words from Jesus are meant for you. Why did he invite people to rest in him? Maybe he saw how weary they were or how frustrated they felt at not seeing much fruit from their labors. Perhaps he noticed the burdens they were carrying—family challenges, guilt over past sins, or fears for their future. How many of us have felt this way as well!
The good news is that Jesus understands our need for rest. Remember, he often experienced fatigue and difficulties himself. His physical tiredness came from walking miles in the heat, surrounded by crowds of people wanting something from him. But he also felt a spiritual burden, knowing that he would eventually be rejected by many of these same people and condemned to a painful death.
How did Jesus deal with all this stress? By going away to rest in his Father’s presence—sometimes all night long (Luke 6:12). Jesus knew that his mission required that he do the hard work of preaching and teaching and healing, but he also knew that it required time apart with his Father so that he could continue on the path laid out for him.
Similarly, God has specific work that he wants us to do, and it can be demanding at times, especially as Christmas Day draws nearer. That’s why we have to make time to get away, just to be with Jesus, to receive his rest, his comfort, and his grace. This can pose a challenge to us, but it is so important that we need to make sure we do it. If only for a few moments at a time, we need to put aside our long Christmas to-do lists and postpone all those pressing demands. Think about how refreshing a quick nap can be. Think of how helpful it can be to get outside for a short walk. Now imagine how much more refreshing it can be to spend just a few moments with Jesus!
Today, take time to rest quietly in the Lord’s presence. Put the Christmas demands out of your mind—at least for a moment. Don’t worry about saying anything. Just relax, and soak up his love.
“Lord, I rest in you. Come and fill me up!”~WAU