What wearies you today? What burdens do you carry? 

(Before you read on, take time to reflect on your answers.)

Where do I find my peace? What is the rest I seek?

(Stop. Reflect.)

When our children were young my wife and I didn’t send them to bed with a book and some sheet music. We accompanied them, read stories to them, and sang them to sleep. We didn’t change the world, but we changed their world so they could rest in peace. 

Jesus’ rest is also personal — he knows your weariness, the burdens you carry, be it from hard work, addiction, depression, grief or guilt. He invites you to come to him. The rest he offers is a relationship based on forgiving love. A love the world rejected. And still does.

Lent is a journey of walking with Jesus, who ultimately walks alone…to the cross — the cross that exposes him, and us. Alone, he is there for us, a love that will not let us go. His death makes the Easter words of “peace” possible. Discipleship begins with resting in this gift, the gift of rest that allows us to rise up and follow.

Today, Jesus, I come to you to lay my burdens down. Thank you for inviting me again and again to rest like a trusting child by the still waters of your kindness and grace. And when I rise, help me to lift the burdens of others. Amen.

Rev. Peter Narum, St James Lutheran Church, Verona, WI

Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.

Matthew 11:28