Then Jesus said,“Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls.
Callum and his friends were hanging out one evening. It was something they normally did. They would order some chicken and chips, some drinks and chill on the doorstep outside their house, while music blasted from the bluetooth speaker. On this occasion, a drug deal was going on, a few 50 yards away, which they were unaware of. Like a joke, these innocent guys were carted away with the drug dealers. After a four year stint in prison, a legal battle costing £20,000 Callum and his friends were home free. But they would never get a decent job again.
Andrea had a beautiful baby boy. But she had thousands of others who were aborted before they had a chance to start life. She’d fallen among seriously bad “friends” who got her addicted to heroin. They encouraged her to “escort” guys and get paid for it, “took care” of her, while they profited from it. She was arrested one night for soliciting, bailed by her parents and nagged at to get sober. She finally got clean. Willing to start a new life, she moved, got a job and started a new life. She started dating again, carefully seeking out the signs of destructive relationships. Her first relationship was beautiful, for the first 4 months. But once the story of her past reached her neighbours, she would never find a respectable guy again.
Baggage is everywhere. Life has a cruel way of heaping social, physical, emotional and spiritual bags on our head. Very often, those bags determine how we live life. They shape our view of the world. For some, these bags have ruined beautiful relationships. For some, there isn’t much hope than to go down destructive paths. But lucky for us, Jesus Christ knew all of these. He met his fair share of people like that. He met that woman who was caught cheating on her husband in John 8:2-11. Everyone already judged her. They’d already sentenced her and were about to carry out the sentence. But Jesus stopped them. But here’s the painful truth. The woman had already accepted the bags of judgement, of insult, of shame, of disgrace passed on her. Her family would suffer the scandal even after she was long dead. Her husband, if she survived, would have prepared a divorce document waiting for her before she got home. There was really no way out. So, she stayed on her knees in front of Jesus, waiting. It couldn’t be worse than what she already was. It couldn’t be as bad as the shame she had already experienced.
And then Jesus said something she’d never heard since her sins were exposed.
“No, Lord,” she said.
And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.”
The Good News
That is good news to you, to me and to everyone who has seen life at its ugliest. For us not to drop our bags and go pick it up again (because some of us do go back to our old ways of doing things), Jesus Christ tells us to swap bags with Him!
“Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.”
We’re being encouraged to take His yoke, because His yoke is easier, and His yoke will bring us rest. The only task we’re asked? Learn of Him. Spend time with Him. Get closer to Him. Create a relationship with Him. Just remember this.
Yet it was our weaknesses he carried;
it was our sorrows[a]that weighed him down.
And we thought his troubles were a punishment from God,
a punishment for his own sins!
But he was pierced for our rebellion,
crushed for our sins.
He was beaten so we could be whole.
He was whipped so we could be healed.
All of us, like sheep, have strayed away.
We have left God’s paths to follow our own.
Yet the Lord laid on him
the sins of us all.
We all have sinned. We all have baggage. We all have sorrows & griefs. But Jesus took all on Himself. Accepting Him is the least we can do.
Lord Jesus, we thank you for your death on the cross for our sins. We acknowledge that you died for us, for our baggages, our sins, our weakness, our pain, you died for it all. Lord we ask you to give us the grace live a life that trusts you, I life that allows you to carry all our baggages whilst we hold on to you to and walk in your rest!
Written by - Courage Adeniyi