I think most of us suffer from the lack of rest, or are not rested. We are not refreshed or energised even after sleep. We feel tired and weary, not just physically, but also spiritually and emotionally. We are burdened by our own personal struggles, our work, our family, our relationships, and we fill our calendars with too many obligations.
So we tell ourselves we need a holiday, take a break. And our vacation leaves us more tired than before! We need to rest after our vacation.
The fact that we need rest makes the invitation from Jesus very appealing. Jesus declared: “Come to me all who labour (‘are weary’ NASB) and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest ….. you will find rest for your souls.” (Matt 11:28-29 ESV)
Jesus is not talking about physical rest but about spiritual rest. Many people in this world are
weary in their spirits. Even Singaporeans, with our comforts of life, many are troubled in their souls.
And they try to find rest in all the wrong places. Some look to a mate (sex), or alcohol or a pill or pleasure, entertainment, a job or money.
While people run here and there trying to find rest and peace, Jesus says simply, “Come to me, and I will give you rest.”
There is a place of rest, a place of peace, and we will find that in none other than Jesus. Jesus invites us all to enter that place of spiritual rest. In so doing, it will also result in our having physical and emotional rest and peace.
What does spiritual rest mean to us?
The Rest of Salvation
Jesus calls us to “come” to Him. Salvation is found in coming to Jesus alone!
There is no person, no place, no object or thing, that one can find salvation and rest, other than in the person of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is not just in coming to church or doing ‘churchy’ things, but coming to know Jesus personally, trusting Him absolutely and having a personal relationship
“There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12)
All of us are included in this invitation. We are people who are ‘weary’ and ‘heavy laden’ with our troubles and sins.
When we come to Jesus, we are given, among other things:
- the forgiveness of our sins, and freedom from sin’s bondage;
- peace with God and His blessings; assuredness of our salvation;
- rest and calmness about our future.
This is what Jesus has promised – rest, peace, quietness, calmness and refreshment.
The Call to Surrender
With salvation comes surrender. Jesus is calling us to surrender control of our lives completely to Him. We are to yield, to give up, to let go – and let Him take over. It is a commitment to let Jesus take full control of every aspect of our life.
This call is also a surrender to a partnership. Jesus is saying: “Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me.” (Matt 11:29) He is not calling us to walk alone in life’s journey. He is calling us to walk with Him. He is asking us to partner Him in this walk and Kingdom work. We yield to His control, and He goes with us and enables us to live for Him. How awesome and wonderful is this partnership with our Lord Jesus!
This is the secret, the key to finding true rest. We will find rest in Jesus, in His amazing grace and goodness.
By Andrew Yap, Deacon (YCKC Bulletin 23&24 September 2017)