Day 12

When my body is tired, I know what to do. I know what the problem is.
I have not been going to bed early enough. I have not been resting physically.

The solution—though difficult to put into practice for many—is obvious.

But what about when our souls and spirits are weary? What happens when our hope is running low? Where do we turn and what do we do when physical rest isn’t our biggest problem? How can we find rest for the inside part— the part that seems to be spinning and spinning and can never find rest.

Honestly, that feels more complicated, but really it’s quite simple. Jesus tells us:

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, 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.
— Matthew 11:28–30

Rest for your souls? What does that even mean?

John Piper says it like this:
“Our souls only find rest in hope. That’s what we’re frantically looking for whenever our souls are burdened and restless: hope. And that’s what most of the marketing of most of the products in the world tries to offer us: hope. But they are false hopes for soul-rest, providing only temporary distraction from or briefly masking the effects of our burdened souls. They don’t truly lighten our loads.”

 So Jesus says that you can find rest for your soul when you take his yoke, his burden, and give him yours. What does that mean? It means that you trade worry about all kinds of things you can’t control for the burden of believing and trusting. We say to him, “I can’t handle the worries of life. I believe you can.”

We pray a double-rest prayer that sounds like this:

Jesus, will you let my soul rest while you handle the rest?

His burden is light, because it’s just belief and trust. It’s not doing. It’s not performing. It’s not living up to expectations. It’s not measuring up or proving anything. It’s just placing our full confidence in a God who loves us, is good, is trustworthy, is kind, has it all figured out, and is in full control. We take our hands off the reigns and place them into his capable, loving, kind hands.

Does your soul need rest? Are you weary? Tell him today. Tell Jesus you trust him. Tell him you want to trade burdens. Let him carry yours today. Then when you try to pick your burden back up, tell him again. He has you.

Rest in that truth!

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