Written by Grace Young
I work in a hospital. My job is to sit with patients who are in an altered mental state. Let me tell you, I have a lot of horror stories.
Last week I had a really special shift, though. I was assigned to a patient with dementia, known for being aggressive and attempting to hurt staff. I walked in there praying for a man I had never met, that Jesus’ presence would be known. I saw a Bible on his nightstand and prayed I would get to use it. My patient spent the next hour getting worked up and angry, telling me lots of things I can’t repeat.
I asked if I could read the Bible to him, and he said yes. I read to him for the next three hours, and you know what? He slept, smiled, and asked me to keep reading every time I took a breath. I read dozens of Psalms, and then began reading Matthew. When I got to Matthew 11:28-30, he looked at me and said, “I haven’t slept in a long time, but now I can when you read because it’s bringing my mind peace.”
Matthew 11:28-30 says,
“Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 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. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”
Life is not easy. We all have burdens. We all have pain that tries to bury itself deep.
Jesus makes the unbearable weight on our shoulders feel like hope in our lungs.
He asks us to trust Him as He walks with us. To give Him our burdens, and leave the weight of our worries on His shoulders that do not get weary. We can find rest in Him alone through His kindness and grace.
How do we give these burdens to Him and find peace?
1. Come to Jesus
– Notice the first word of vs. 28 is “come”. We were not made for self-sufficiency. We were created to need Jesus. Come before Jesus and ask Him to open your eyes to your need for Him. Confess any sin that may be preventing peace, and ask for direction. [Psalm 34:17]
2. Find Scripture
– Read verses that point you to Christ’s care for you, His presence, His help. Put them everywhere around you: on your mirror, your steering wheel, your walls, wherever you’re gonna see them regularly. [Psalm 4:8]
3. Tell someone
– Find someone who will point you to Christ and encourage you to keep your eyes on Him. Be careful to find someone who will encourage you to trust God, not just them as your friend. [James 5:16]
4. Keep talking
– Consistency in the word, prayer, and surrendering to God build trust. You won’t experience the peace of God in your life because you prayed once and woke up feeling better. Allow Jesus to bring the peace that passes all understanding by staying consistent. [Philippians 4:6-9]