Rest for our Soul?

Jesus says, “come to me all who are weary and heavily burdened, and I will give you rest to your soul.”

Jesus says that he is “meek and lowly in heart.”

Jesus says, “take my yoke upon you because my burden is easy and my yoke is light.”

I want to think more about these ideas. I get very tired.

I get up early because it makes my day go much better if I can get up before my children do and spend some time with the Lord in quiet, and even better if I get up early enough to write also. I also stay up late working most nights because I want my days to be spent caring for my kids. I sacrificed them on the alter of work for too many years. I have made a strong decision not to do this any longer, but I feel myself being sacrificed.

My body, my mind, my soul…little by little seems to be utterly spent. Pair this with my care of the Christian faith, the state of our nation, and personal problems in this life, and the burdens are oh so heavy. I get tired physically, mentally, and emotionally for a number of reasons. This world is exhausting.

To find rest. Real rest. That is an astounding thing, and I feel kind of silly because I don’t think I have really entered into His rest. Not like I could perhaps.

There are times when I feel like it is all just too much, then I look to Jesus, and I feel better. I feel rest in His sovereignty. I feel rest in His mercy. I feel rest in His faithfulness. Yet, the world always seems to squeeze the life out of me…and would do its best to squeeze He who is Life out of me also.

To find rest. Real rest–and abide therein. That is the sabbath, is it not? Do the churches by and large offer His rest? They don’t seem to. Not for me anyway.

Instead, I seem to find a yoke of accepting sinfulness. Some call evil good and good evil. Some admit defeat to sin as they neglect the power of the gospel and the kingdom for our present lives. Some try to reach the kingdom through legalism. Some set up their own kingdom.

Yoke upon heavy yoke, yes. Rest? Not so much.

I feel ostracized by most Christians. I feel looked down upon by most Christians. I feel judged as condemned by the Lord because of my poverty and the hardships of my life by some Christians.

I feel this pressure to “conform or else” by most Christians. Conform to what they think is righteous or good…which very often seems to oppose what Jesus really teaches. Many want to make me a white-washed tomb or a cup that’s outwardly clean, or a duplicate of themselves or their favorite minister.

But what about my soul? Is my soul cleansed? Is my soul at peace? Have I really found that?

I don’t want to accuse anyone or slander anyone—especially in the body of Christ. Maybe it’s me. Maybe something is wrong with me. However, I do not think I have found the rest of Jesus Christ among most believers.

Perhaps, as Jesus said, “broad is the way that leads to destruction and many there be that go in thereat, and straight is the gate and narrow is the way that leads to life, and few there be that find it.”

Have I really found it? Do I really give it?

I’ve spent several years writing about Christianity and my journey towards seeking more of Jesus, but for all of my work, I wonder, have I rested? Have I helped others rest?

Maybe Jesus brought me to this point of absolute exhaustion so that I could ask myself these questions. Where is His rest? How do I really enter in? Why does it seem like most of the Christian world fails to get me there? How can I help others find His rest too?

Do you have thoughts about this? If you feel like sharing, please feel free to leave a reply. I’d love to hear what you think. Have you found the rest that Jesus offers?  

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