Our burden bearer MATTHEW 11:25–30
By Anne Marie Richardson
The eye of Jesus is always for “the little one”—the downtrodden, the simple, the meek and the racially disenfranchised. His heart is always one of compassion and so, as this relatively short gospel passage begins, His prayer beckons us to a level of relationship with His Father that would reveal mysteries of the Father to us.
His intense prayer shows an intimacy between Him and His Father when He says, “No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son wishes to reveal him.”
This speaks of a closeness that parents today long to share with their own children. The Father and the Son are working in tandem so that the Son knows the will of the Father even before He fully speaks it into being. They are one and they operate as one, “The Father and I are one,” (Jn 10: 30). This Son is also the One who reveals the Father to us by His design.
As the gospel passage continues, Jesus virtually beckons the burdened to lighten his load by sharing such with Him; don’t we often acknowledge that He is our “burden bearer”! Scripture is replete with examples of such—He healed the blind man, (Jn 9:1–41); He cast out devils from the tormented, (ff Lk 8:26). He healed Jairus’ daughter, (Lk 8:51–56), and He seemed to absorb the burden of the widow as she put her mite (coins) into the offering (Mk 12: 41–44).
Jesus gives the burdened a rest that is out of the reach of the average person to do. But today we turn to all sorts of books and programmes that tout wide and varied formulae to ease our ever-pressing trials and, in keeping with what the world generally advocates, we tend to forget the touch of the Master’s hand.
Everywhere we turn, our world is in absolute turmoil and conflict. In all this we continue to look to the earthly experts, the ‘wise’ for solutions and we neglect the one who enabled their wisdom, (Rom 1: 21–25).
How many of our leaders turn to The Leader for guidance and direction in these times of crisis, or is that too simple to be worthy of any consideration?
Ironically it is so simple and uncomplicated that it is too simple and uncomplicated for our wise and learned minds to fathom, but scripture says in Psalm 37: 4, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not unto your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct your paths.”
No matter how wise or educated we perceive ourselves to be, we are not invincible as that present day “tiny and insidious little stalker”, the coronavirus, is now showing us as it continues to plague us with worldwide suffering and death.
Now, more than ever, we need the wisdom of God to reveal to us how to deal with the challenges in which we are enmeshed. It is when we have embraced the simplicity and the meekness of Jesus that our eyes would be opened and we would be granted the privilege of seeing as He sees, which is as the Father sees.
Today, we should be focused on the heart of Jesus who is beckoning us to a relationship with Him in which He desires to share our burdens, “…and you will find rest for yourselves. For my yoke is easy, and my burden light,” (Matt 11: 29–30)
We pray, “Jesus, meek and humble of heart, make our hearts like unto Thine.”
The gospel meditations for July are by Anne Marie Richardson, a retired educator, and a parishioner of the Santa Rosa/Malabar cluster.