Thursday, July 22, 2010

A light burden?

I have always been somewhat bewildered by Matthew 11:28-30.

"Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

Bewildered, yet impacted greatly.  Come to Jesus and give him my burdens in exchange for rest.  Okay, no problem there, I'll gladly rid myself of those.  But what comes next, "Take my yoke upon you,"  Christ's burdens?  How could this be a fun exchange?  I thought that I was exchanging these burdens for rest, now I see I am to take His yoke, to suffer?  But wait, the yoke is "easy" and his "burden is light"?  Now that just doesn't seem to make sense, from my perspective of course.  The One who suffered death for me, His yoke is "easy"?  And how in the world is any burden light?

I think that I will always be intrigued by this.  Though I do have some understanding, it still remains such a great mystery at the same time.  A hopeful and comforting mystery.

How can His burden be light?  His work was to do the will of His Father, the Creator of all things, God Himself.  Unlike us who so often work for ourselves and a lot of times against God, He worked for God.  From the beginning He teamed with the greatest most powerful Victor who promises to bring a great victory.  And now, "It is finished."  The victory is won. He has completed the work He came to do.  Now we wait.  We hope.  We look forward to His coming back once and for all.  

How can His yoke be easy?  Well, if we came to Him, then it's not really us that is carrying the yoke.  A yoke is used to bind together two oxen so that they share a workload.  If we have come to Him, we are bound to Him in the carrying of the yoke.  We are not carrying the load, He is.  We have the great honor of walking beside Him, learning from Him, talking with Him, and He carries the yoke through us.  AMAZING.

Earlier in the same chapter John asks if Jesus is the One they have been expecting and waiting for, "Now when John heard in prison about the deeds of the Christ, he sent word by his disciples and said to him, “Are you the one who is to come, or shall we look for another?”And Jesus answered them, “Go and tell John what you hear and see: the blind receive their sight and the lame walk, lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear, and the dead are raised up, and the poor have good news preached to them. And blessed is the one who is not offended by me.” Mt 11:2-6

I think the miracle in our hearts of Christ taking our burdens on Himself and exchanging them for fellowship with Him in His work and making the burden light might just be just as powerful as the miracles He was identified with in the previous passage.  Just the same, He should be identified clearly in us as others see this miracle in our lives.

1 comment:

My Life as a Mom said...

You're right that is a mystery but a beautiful one just the same.

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