Have you ever experienced days where you wish you had someone to confide in completely, someone you could pour your full heart out to? Days where it seems the weight of the world is crashing down on you, and the need to unload the heaviness continues to grow. Over the years, my heart has also wrestled with this weight and questioned who I can talk to when feeling so alone and overwhelmed. In these times, the Lord has been faithful to remind me that I have a constant companion who is always waiting for me to come and rest: Him. If you are struggling with overwhelming feelings like these today, I want to share what the Lord has taught me. He, the Lord of glory, the God of heaven and earth, is waiting, yearning for you to come and confide in Him. He longs to comfort, to help, to listen, even strengthen you.
Jesus said, “Come to me, all you who labor and are heavily burdened, and I will give you rest” in Matthew 11:28. His words declare rest from labor and freedom from heavy burdens. Oh, what a blessed relief filled thought. However, action to gain both rest and freedom is necessary. The first three words Jesus speaks are “Come to me.” No matter how much we may want deliverance from our burdens or how badly we need rest, we will receive neither until we make our way to Jesus.
It is not that He is stingy or begrudging to give the rest and freedom. No, He is more than willing to grant them both. Scripture says in 2 Peter 1:3, “His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness through the knowledge of Him who has called us by His own glory and excellence.” All things were given, but the words given and received have two distinct meanings. I can “give” you $100, but if you do not “receive” the money, you do not enjoy the benefit of it.
Let’s say I am holding the money in my hand, and you are standing across the room from me. What action would need to take place before you could receive the money? We would need to move closer together, right? If I said, “If you come to me, I’ll give you this $100, and you can go buy whatever you want,” and you refused to budge from your position across the room, the money would do you no good. It is the same with Jesus and our receiving the rest and freedom He has for us. The good things are given, but we must move from self-absorption to His enthronement to receive.
Notice the passage in 2 Peter again. He has given all things, but how? “Through the knowledge of Him who has called us.” His giving is connected to knowledge. We must know Him. In other words, we need intimate knowledge of Him. In many places in Scripture, “knowing” refers to intimacy in the original languages. In other words, a relationship is a prerequisite to receiving. When Jesus said, “Come to me,” He was envisioning a relationship where provision and supply flow simultaneously between the relationship partners. Consider parents and children or husbands and wives. The relationship partners receive because of intimacy. There is a supply that flows in the relationship.
When we answer Jesus’ call to “Come to me,” we’re entering into a more intimate relationship with Him, rather than remaining far away. We are reaching out and taking hold of the blessings of rest and freedom He offers. You may ask how this is done. Romans 10:9-10 says, “That if you confess with your mouth Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved, for with the heart one believes unto righteousness and with the mouth, confession is made unto salvation.”
Similarly, 2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “Therefore if any man is in Christ, he is a new creature. Old things have passed away. Look, all things have become new.” It is that simple. Believing with your heart and confessing with your mouth that Jesus is Lord of your life makes everything brand new. You are suddenly moved from death to life, from darkness to light (1 John 3:14, Ephesians 5:8, 1 Peter 2:9). The latter part of Romans 6:4 says once we receive Christ, “even so we also should walk in newness of life.” What can we expect in that new life? Rest from labor and freedom from heavy burdens. So I encourage you today to answer Jesus’ call. You’ll not regret it. He’s waiting for you to come. He wants you to crawl up in His lap and pour your heart out to Him.
Also, I want to say that if you haven’t already received Jesus into your heart and you desire to be transformed into a new creation through His love and mercy, He is inviting you to join His family today! You can start by praying through these sentences and thinking about what they mean for your life, “Heavenly Father, I come before you as a sinner with no hope of self-reconciliation. I recognize that You are the only one who can make me new and redeem me. I ask you to forgive me. I believe Jesus died, was buried, and that you raised Him from the dead on the third day to free me from sin. I believe that He took my sin so that I might live with Him in everlasting paradise. I receive Him now. I confess Him as Lord over my life. I confess I am saved. I am part of your forever family. Thank you, Heavenly Father, for saving me.”
If you prayed that prayer, then I would encourage you to find a pastor and friend who can tell you more about what it means and looks like to be a part of Christ’s family.
*All Bible verses taken from the Modern English Translation unless otherwise indicated.