Summary: Learning to know God so intimately that we can trust Him completely and rest in Him fully.
Not many of you have had a chance to visit our apartment since we moved in, but if you have, you’ve probably been in our spare bedroom. Right now, it’s a haven for our foster cats. We have 9 foster cats right now, including 7 8-week old kittens. In that bedroom, we also have a single bed so we can entertain guests and give them a place to sleep. It’s a simple bed, just a mattress with a piece of plywood for support. The problem with the plywood, though, is it’s not quite big enough for the bed-frame. So, in theory, you could push it completely over to one side and it COULD be pushed through the frame, dumping you to the floor.
This…happened to me. I came into the bedroom one day and laid down in the bed…I don’t remember why I wouldn’t just go lay down in our comfortable bed, but can assure you it had nothing to do with being KICKED out of that one. I laid down in the bed, wanting to take a load off for a few minutes, but what I got was a trip to the floor and the annoyance of having to fix the bed back up. I looked for rest, but I was let down.
Now, this is my office chair. I got it from Walmart. I like it. I mean, I LIKE it. Really, I love it. I have never owned a chair quite this comfortable. It’s probably the second-best purchase we made in anticipation of moving here. The first was our wonderfully comfortable couch. I can sit in this chair and really take a load off. It reclines. I can lean my head back and rest it on its high back. I find comfort in this chair. I find rest in this chair.
It’s interesting…after the collapsing of the bed incident, I have never really been able to trust that bed again. When I lay down in it, I never fully trust that I am safe. I never fully trust that it won’t come out from under me; that it will support me. On the flip side, I rest in this chair; I am comfortable in this chair because I trust it. It has never let me down. I have never had it collapse under me or break on me. I trust the chair to support me and I rest in the chair because I trust it. But…if that trust is broken…if the chair for whatever reason breaks, there will be a part of me that will distrust it. And that distrust will prevent me from ever truly resting in this chair again. Because rest requires trust. I don’t trust that bed, therefore I cannot rest in it. Sure, I could sleep in it if I had to. I can sleep, but I would not rest. Rest requires trust.
Many of us here this morning are tired. We have had long, busy weeks…even with a holiday thrown in…or because of it. We come in here with heavy hearts. We come in distracted. We come in burdened. We come in hurting. We come in weary. We are tired. We live in a go-go-go society and we get caught up in it. We subscribe to the world of fast cars, fast money, and fast internet and we frown on taking it slow. We are scared to take a rest. I have too much to do. And we run ourselves ragged. We become weary. We are heavy burdened.
This morning, if you have your Bibles with you, would you turn to the book of Matthew, chapter 11, beginning in verse 28. It will be a familiar passage to you, I’m sure, we’ll read the three verses to end the chapter: 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."
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest”. You may remember I said earlier that rest requires trust and so it begs the question, can we trust Him? Can we trust God? Can we rest in Him knowing that He will hold us up, knowing that He will not let us fall? Or will He, like that bed, collapse beneath us. Will He just let us fall to the ground?
Many of you are familiar with the book series by C.S. Lewis called The Chronicles of Narnia. If you’re not, you will be familiar with the movie series. If not, you’ve probably been living under a rock somewhere until this very point. The Chronicles of Narnia have been a best-seller for years and contains many parallels of Jesus in it.