What does Jesus mean when he tells us to come to Him and He will give us rest? The first thing Jesus asks us to do is take His yoke, put it on and learn from Him. He’s telling us that through His yoke and the lessons that we can learn from wearing it that we will find peace or rest.
Jesus’ statement also suggests that we are already wearing a yoke. One made of doubt, uncertainty, fear, sin, worry, bad habits, and a lack of hope. The burden that comes with that yoke can at times be overwhelming. Often times there are secrets and lies that are needed to maintain our yoke. Just the sound of that has a heavy feel to it, and a sense of burden associated with trying to wear that yoke and get through our day-to-day life.
My next question…What is Jesus’ yoke made of that it will give us rest? Jesus’ is made of the essence of the Holy Trinity. Love, faith, hope, trust, and last, but not least, peace. Peace of mind, peace of heart, peace in our being. Not only does that sound lighter and free of burden, it sounds like a yoke that would be a joy to wear.
We all have multiple yokes that we maintain. We all have situations in our life that prompt us to put on the yoke that we habitually wear. Something happens that upsets us and we put on the yoke of anger and frustration. We miss our designated time to work out and we put on the yoke of being too busy. An unexpected event pops up, and we put on our yoke of anxiety. A night out with our friends when you had a few too many adult beverages and you put on the yoke of God will understand why I had to miss mass.
My fellow disciples regardless of how many yokes we may have, whether we created them ourselves, or they were formed and made through the temptations of Satan.
Jesus is calling each of us to purge our rack of yokes and replace it with just one.
The yoke of Jesus, made by Him, customized to fit you and me individually. One designed to address our personal temptations and situations. A yoke that requires three things from us; love, trust, and faith.
Love because He loved us first and loves us unconditionally as we are called to love Him.
Trust because we must know in our heart of hearts that God wants what is best for us.
Faith, because part of loving and trusting God is believing in those things unseen and knowing with certainty that His will shall be done.
So my fellow disciples may we all take inventory of our yokes, separating Jesus’ yoke from all the rest of the yokes on the rack. May we strive to destroy the ones we have that separate us from God and remember to put on the yoke of Christ daily. In the words of Jesus…
For my yoke is easy, and my burden light.