In Matthew’s Gospel, Chapter 11:28, Jesus says, “Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest.”
This passage can bring comfort to any situation a person finds him or herself in, but especially to someone who is facing a road of uncertainty in their life. Not knowing where our life is heading can cause us to concoct many a disastrous scenario about the future, and can lead to making decisions we later regret.
God understands our human condition and this is why Jesus compels us to bring our fears and insecurities to him.
So, does this mean that when we bring our problems to Jesus that they will instantly dry up and go away? Hardly.
However, when we bring our struggles to him, he affirms our dignity as God’s beloved sons and daughters and asks us to trust that, even though we don’t know where life is leading us, he does, and he will guide us to safety if we allow him to. Letting go of that control can be one of the scariest decisions we make because we human beings naturally feel the need to be in control of our lives at all times.
We claim to be people of faith, but when it comes down to it, are we really ready to entrust our future to the Lord?
When we don’t believe that the Lord is trustworthy, we fall right in line with Adam and Eve who didn’t think he was either. Their problem was that they forgot they were creatures and tried to be gods.
When we don’t put our trust in God, aren’t we doing the same? This is probably the most common temptation human beings fall to and it was what led C.S. Lewis to finally conclude, “I gave in and admitted that God was God.”
God respects our freedom and never imposes his will on us. That being said, he pursues us like a mad lover who desires nothing more than for us to say “yes” to his invitation. When we say yes to the Lord, and go to him when life becomes uncertain and confusing, our lives will take on an entirely different meaning.
Pope Benedict XVI once wrote, “being Christian is not the result of an ethical choice or a lofty idea, but the encounter with an event, a person, which gives life a new horizon and a decisive direction.”
Encountering Jesus and responding to his invitation to trust in him not only comforts us, but changes us — it changes the way we look at the world, our neighbor, our relationships, and our very selves. Perhaps during this time of Lent, we can do an internal inventory and honestly examine our relationship with the Lord.
Maybe we can look at those areas of our lives that are uncertain and begin to bring that doubt and insecurity to him, taking him at his word and finding the rest we need.
The Rev. CHRIS DOWNEY is rector of Holy Family Catholic Church in Copperas Cove.