Matthew 11:28-30 ‘Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, 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.
I was challenged over the past couple of weeks about what to write for my next entry. When I am not sure what to put down, that usually means there is much more going on in my head than I realize. I can’t find a clear path to follow and so it becomes difficult to write down my thoughts.
I look back and think about what stuck out for me these past few weeks. (few months actually but I will focus on weeks) After “vacation” I got back to work at 6:00 am Monday morning. Forgive me for the quotations around vacation, but in the midst of flying, visiting family, friends, mentors, and colleagues the trip proved to be quite exhausting. Every moment was worth it and I wouldn’t take any of them back. I definitely learned valuable lessons over several days and a few cups of coffee. As much as it was great to visit and learn, it wore me out.
I had an extremely busy first week of the year that included humbled moments of pastoral care and preaching God’s word. I loved every moment of those moments. However in the midst of ministry, life was taking a toll on me and I crashed after worship, with a congested head, irritated cough and a really bad sore throat. However, I thought it would go away because it was a simple cold. Long story short, it took three days and a few white dots on swollen tonsils to finally get me to the doctor. Knowing my sense of humor and my need to find accomplishment, she congratulated me and then diagnosed strep throat, tonsillitis, and the added pleasure of that irritated cough. Anyway, I was ordered to go home and not work for the next two days due to being contagious. I should say, she told me not be around people for the next two days. I can’t afford to the time off from work so I will work via my computer. Well, I slept for three days. Apparently, I couldn’t afford NOT to take the time so my body could heal.
As ministers, we are going to have busy weeks and busy seasons. Just so happened, my busy seasons and busy weeks came back to back to back. That comes with the role. I am extremely grateful for what God has called me to do and I will continue to do so with a willing spirit and a humbled heart.
God has also called me to rest and lay my burdens upon Jesus Christ. I have been given permission to lay my head on His lap and rest within the comfort of the Holy Spirit. We are all given that permission. Somehow in the midst of ministry, we are supposed to take care of ourselves and give God the opportunity to minister to us. That particular call has been harder to answer with a humbled heart and easy to ignore with a “willful” spirit. We answer to many people and with that come many expectations – most from them, many from me. The willful spirit wants to answer all those expectations, no matter how high they may be.
Why is it that we try to answer everyone else’s expectations and not God’s? God wants us to rest. God needs us to rest. God needs us to rest so we can do what we are called to do. God took time to rest. Jesus Christ took time to rest. So why can’t we? Why can’t I?
As an educator, I appreciate creatively crafted lessons that take the hands on approach to understand and meet the objectives sought. God bless the call of ministry and the lessons learned and lessons yet to be. I am learning more than I ever imagined and I think I am just beginning to understand. Thank you Jesus for being my tutor through all of this. Thank you.
Can I ask one thing though? Do you mind if we go out for recess before the next session?