Those of us who pastor churches know all too well that many in the flock are restless creatures. It’s really an oxymoron when you think about it; sheep who are busy, tired, and running around like crazy when in fact actual sheep are quiet, content, satisfied and peaceful beings in a world full of wolves. If we’re honest, we shepherds can be very restless at times too. The reason often given is constant: “It is the world we live in!” Perhaps, but even in the time of Jesus we see a Martha who ought to have been a Mary (Luke 10:40-42).
We live in a sinful world filled with many burdens that can weigh us down and cause great restlessness in the soul. This restlessness can challenge us to become discouraged in our walk with Christ. Restlessness is often demonstrated with dreams of change. It may be a new house, job, church, school, or even spouse. In fact, a restless soul is a discontented soul. Is there a cure?
The cure for restlessness, the solution to a life void of contentment is Christ and Christ alone. He graciously invites us to exchange all of life’s burdens, challenges, disappointments, heartaches, and trials for a new burden: him! And he is no burden at all. Jesus said,
Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and my burden is light (Matt 11:28-30).
Ironic isn’t it? He invites us to give up one load to take on another; him! He invites us to stop, unload our burdens and take him to ourselves. What we will find is that his load is easy; his burden is light. Jesus is no burden at all. As a matter of fact, it is a joy to walk with Jesus. He gives rest to our souls. Sounds good, doesn’t it?
Categories: Christ, Christian living
I agree completely. I would add, however, that part of taking on that new burden is loving what he loves. The Good Shepherd loves the sheep which means we must as well. While I already know that some sheep are easier to love than others, still, if we are to be like Christ, we must love even the one that has strayed.
One interesting fact in nature is that, while it is relatively easy to find wild goats, wild sheep are practically unheard of. That’s because, without the protection of a shepherd, they are quickly killed off. That’s why God gave undershepherds to the flock.
I think when we remember the importance of our call along with growing in Christ so that we love what he loves, then it makes an undeniably difficult task easier to bear.