REST STOP

“Come to Me, all you who are weary and find life burdensome, and I will refresh you.” –Matthew 11:28

Mass Readings: July 20
First: Exodus 3:13-20; Resp: Psalm 105:1,5,8-9,24-27; Gospel: Matthew 11:28-30.

Listen to the Mass Readings

Imagine yourself coming to Jesus with this huge burden on your back. Jesus takes the burden off your shoulders (see Ps 81:7). Before you even can thank Him and walk away unburdened, He takes a humongous burden off of His back and puts it on yours. Now you’ve got more to carry than ever before. For some reason, however, His yoke is easy and His burden light (Mt 11:30). Because this is Jesus’ burden, He is bearing most of the weight. You are another Simon of Cyrene helping Jesus carry the cross (Lk 23:26). You’re made to carry this cross. You’re rested and strengthened in carrying this cross. You come to a point where you boast of nothing but the cross of Jesus Christ (Gal 6:14).

Realistically, we cannot be unburdened in this life on earth. We can only be re-burdened with Jesus’ burden, the cross. Pretending that we can unburden ourselves makes life more burdensome. We make life harder by trying to make it easier. Paradoxically, the heaviest burden, that is, the cross, is the easiest to carry because Jesus carried it. It is in striving to carry the cross that we enter into His rest (see Heb 4:11). Take up your cross daily (Lk 9:23) and get the best rest you’ll get on this earth.

PRAYER: Father, give me both earthly and eternal rest.
PROMISE: “I am concerned about you and about the way you are being treated in Egypt.” –Ex 3:16
PRAISE: After St. Apollinaris was exiled and martyred, many miracles were attributed to him.

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