Each week this year, I am challenging myself to memorize a Scripture verses (or verses). This week’s memory verses are Matthew 11:28-30. In these verses, we are given the secret to find rest for the stressed.

Most of us need to learn how to experience rest. If all we needed was physical rest, we can always take a nap. If we needed only emotional rest, we can always take a vacation. But where can we find spiritual rest?

Our memory verses for this week contain 3 commands from Jesus that lead to rest.

1. COME TO ME…  “Come…all…and I will give…”
Jesus regularly invited people to come to Him to meet their needs.
You become a Christian through a moment-of-time choice to answer His invitation to turn from your own ways and come to Him. You will find He’s been waiting for you all along. Have you done that? Can you look to a time when you decided to answer His call to come
You might say, “But my life is really a mess; I don’t think I am ready to come.” His invitation says, “Come one, come all, come as you are!”

What kind of spiritual rest will Jesus give?

– Rest for those who labor… struggle under self-effort.

– Rest for those who are heavy laden… self-burdened with sin.

2. TAKE MY YOKE (upon you)
YOKE: “a type of harness that connects a pair of oxen”; a pair of connected oxen was typically called a yoke of oxen.
It was used metaphorically to refer to submission to a teacher; in NT times, the phrase, “to take the yoke of” was used by rabbis to refer to “becoming a submitted pupil of a teacher”
Used 6x in the NT, the word has two dominant figurative ideas:
– The yoke of rules and religion. MANS YOKE
– The yoke of relationship. JESUS YOKE
Jesus said that His yoke is easy “well fitted.”
Which yoke have you been under? Jesus’ or man’s?

Jesus’ Yoke implies 3 things:
1) Connection “Be with Me.” Yokes are made for two, not one. We were not meant to go through life living apart from God. His yoke fits well and is lighter than the one we’ve been pulling by ourselves. Be connected to Jesus!
2) Direction “Follow Me.” The idea of a yoke pictures the forward motion of two connected together. You cannot be yoked to Jesus and go your own way anymore. We follow Him and His direction for our life. Follow Jesus!
3) Cooperation “Work with Me.” To be yoked together means that we cooperate with His work. Before we come to Him, we were living for this side of eternity. Now we are joined to His work and discover that our lives make an eternal impact.
We experience only when we obey: COME and TAKE His yoke.
Rest is the result of obedience! We rest in Him!

3. LEARN FROM ME
His third command is to learn from Him (are you open to learn?)

We come, take up His yoke, and the process of learning begins.

* Gentleness: Strength under control (Jesus as the example).
Religious people can be cold and harsh, but not so Jesus. His gentleness draws us to Him with our cares and concerns. Wouldn’t it be great to have someone you can pour out your deepest thoughts, a gentle person who has the strength to help. We need to learn that He wants love on us.

* Humility: Selflessness (Jesus as the example)
Again, religious people can be arrogant and rude toward us.
Pride and self-centeredness is descriptive of the Devil. The very things that turn people off from the church are the very opposite of what Jesus is really like. Hurting, lost and weary people were drawn to Jesus because He cared for them and met their needs.

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