Come Away

“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.” (Matthew 11:28-30 KJV)

Last summer, a co-worker and I took alternating Fridays off, a practice which we resumed this year after Memorial Day. My co-worker, embracing the idea to savor summer, goes to the lake…while I spend the day catching up on the chores I neglected during the week. As you might imagine, this doesn’t exactly lead to an enjoyable day off. I return to work the following Monday not the least bit refreshed, and quite a bit self-peeved for having wasted yet another eight hours of earned leave.

So this past Thursday I left work early, packed up my car, and drove 2.5 hours to a bed & breakfast outside Park Rapids MN. I spent the next three days exploring the area (a.k.a. getting lost), browsing kitschy tourist shops, and my favorite—lounging on the deck outside my room to absorb nature. It was glorious!

At first glance, it would seem I accomplished nothing this past weekend. Indeed, I failed to progress with a piece of writing I’d recently begun, and barely finished reading the first chapter of a book that’s been occupying space on a bookshelf for a couple years. During the quiet times, however, I found myself contemplating the works of God, talking with Him, and listening for His voice. Through being still, I gained a renewed appreciation for time spent with Jesus, and a longing for a closer walk with Him. So often I let the cares of life consume me, and keep me from taking comfort in a relationship with the One who gave me that life, and wants so much more for it than I can imagine.

It’s not realistic for a person to leave town and hide away every weekend. Even someone without a spouse or children has obligations which require time and attention. But Jesus asks us to “come away” to be with Him, and promises rest for those who are worn down from the daily grind of living.  And a moment with Jesus is worth more than an eternity without.

The promise of rest in Jesus—the very thought brings a sigh of relief to my heart.