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Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.

Matthew 11:28-30

Christmas is here, and I find myself wondering: how did that happen? Did we really plow through twelve months of rainy seasons, dry seasons, cold seasons, heat, flooding, traffic jams, school days, sport events, haircuts, doctor’s appointments, and all the little things crammed into the open spaces of our calendars? How is that even possible?

And yet, here we are. Another year. Another Christmas.

In some ways, it has gone by very quickly; in other ways, it has felt incredibly slow and arduous.

I’m going to be honest. I am weary. I’ve been living in “weary” for quite some time. I need rest. My soul needs rest, and I am finding glimpses of freedom in acknowledging this. My defenses are down. I’m becoming comfortable with this reality.

While I’m not waving a flag of victory and dancing my way into Christmas- and the year ahead- I am consciously more settled in my soul – now more than ever – with the conviction that God is God, and I am not. The flag I am waving looks more like surrender. My role in this grand story is to live a life honoring and representing Christ in the best and most authentic way possible. And the way I can do this is to take his yoke upon myself – to learn from him the deeper practice of trust and resiliency – and to keep my gaze fixed on Christ.

I want my life marked, not by doing everything perfectly, or handling each challenging situation without flaw or with a track record of exceptional strength, but marked by working out my faith in weakness and humility, surrender to God, and never giving up. In the weariness, there is rest.

Jesus calls the weary to himself. He does not call the self-sufficient, nor those with the proper religious credentials or perfect, Instagram-able lives. He calls those exhausted from toil, from just getting through the day. He calls those burdened with heavy loads, those weighed down by sin and sorrow. It is these, not the confident and successful, to whom Jesus says, “Come to me.”

Prayer in the Night, by Tish Harrison Warren

It has been a year, and I need Immanuel. I need his closeness…his nearness.

Weary and worn, my hope…my peace…my joy and my heart are living in the childlike wonder that Immanuel is here – that his promise to never leave us is a promise kept, and that his invitation to “Come” has not expired.

Throughout this Advent season we’ve made space to reflect upon the hope we have in Christ’s promise, the peace that anchors us in a world of chaos and sin, the joy as we look to something – Someone – greater to come, and the delight in being so loved by our Savior. We’ve welcomed the anticipation and we’ve leaned in hard to the steadfast truth that holds us in our weariness.

Today is Christmas Day. The long-awaited Messiah has arrived. We no longer wait in suffering and silence but hold his promises close.

He says “Come” to the burned out, the broken, the tired, the hurt, the grieving and the hopeful. He is the Savior for the weary, the long-suffering and the lost. And he invites us to take his yoke…to learn and trust…to rest in his presence.

He is God with us.


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