1 Thess. 5:17 "pray continually,"
Over the years, we have learned that getting a few hours of REM sleep each night is critical. It is what refreshes the body and restores us to optimum physical performance.
REM rest for the soul is how we are restored spiritually, and it happens as we spend time with Jesus in communion and thoughtful reflection on His words.
Jesus alluded to the importance of soul rest when He said,
“Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light” (Matthew 11:28, NLT).
We all carry burdens, either of our choosing or burdens placed upon us through life’s relationships. Our circumstances often weigh us down with concerns and care that are either rational or irrational. But they are burdens nonetheless.
Jesus says, “If you want to experience true rest, you need to link up with Me and carry the burdens I have for you.”
To be “yoked” to something is to be tied to it. Following Jesus requires we be “yoked” to the world’s needs. Caring for others is how we find rest for our weary souls. When we focus on our needs and concerns—to the exclusion of those around us—we shoulder the most cumbersome, taxing load we can bear. People die every day shouldering burdens they were never meant to carry.
However, the burden of love is light, restful, and joyful. It is REM rest for the heart that Jesus promises to all who respond to His call.
Rich DuBose writes from Northern California.