My best friend and I have a very deep friendship. We've been there for each other through some really hard stuff. We do our best to show up to celebrate one another's joys, but also to be present in the pain. For both of us, this makes all the difference; we often say that it seems like it's possible to endure almost anything if you have one good friend.
Today Jesus says, "My yoke is easy and my burden light." (Matthew 11:30) I've never really understood how this is true, especially because when I look at the Cross and see Jesus' burden, it looks pretty intense to me. When Jesus invites us to take His yoke and learn from Him, I'm wondering if it becomes easy and light, precisely because we carry our burdens with Him.
Just like what I've learned in friendship, I'm wondering if the truth of this passage is that everything becomes better and bearable when we are in deep relationship with Jesus. With Jesus, we can bear any yoke, any suffering, any struggle.
This is a mystery that I don't fully understand, and yet at the same time I believe it and know it is true. I know from my experiences in true friendship and even in my experiences in the spiritual life of drawing close to God in intense suffering that it truly makes all the difference. Jesus makes all the difference.
It's all about relationship.
"Come to me," Jesus says. (Matthew 11:28) That's the starting point. I first need to simply come and show up. Then we may find that it is Jesus Who carries our burdens for us and in turn, He gives us rest.
Here I am Lord, I come to do Your will. Teach me Your ways. Help me to carry my burdens. Carry them for me, Lord. Draw me into deeper relationship with You. I am Your disciple here to follow You and learn from you. I love You, Lord. Thank You for giving me rest. Thank You for your peace.
Mary Catherine Craige enjoys spending her time creating art, writing, and playing her Irish harp. She uses her experience as a Montessori teacher and catechist to serve young children through the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd. As a life coach, she encourages and challenges women in all walks of life to more deeply discover their purpose and to live fully alive. You can find out more about her here.