Burden vs. Rest

Happy Freedom Friday Sister!,

So, the coolest thing happened this week. Last Friday I shared with you about the rest that Jesus gives our souls. So, I have been reading this book called “The Pursuit of God” by A.W. Tozer for months! It is a very small book so I have often been mad at myself for taking so long to read it. This past week I finished up the chapter I had been on for weeks and then moved on to the next. You will never guess what the chapter was titled! “Meekness and Rest” As I began to read the chapter it started to answer several questions that I was asking myself after posting the “Yoked?” blog. As I dug into the chapter it referenced Matthew 11:28-30, the very same verse we talked about last week! How cool is God?! That just could not have been a coincidence

A few of my questions were, How do we “yoke” ourselves to Jesus? What can we do to find rest in Jesus? and here is what he explains in the chapter.

A. W. Tozer began this chapter with Matthew 5:5 which is a verse from the Beatitudes. No, not your tweens attitude, lol the Beatitudes. If you don’t know what that is, the Beatitudes are the blessings that Jesus taught in the Sermon on the Mount. Matthew 5:5 says, God blesses those who are meek and lowly, for the whole earth will belong to them. He then explains how the very attributes that the beatitudes teach are the very opposite attributes of human conduct. The burden, if you will, that we are all born with.

” These evils are which make life the bitter struggle it is for all of us. All our heartaches and a great many of our physical ills spring directly out of our sins. Pride, arrogance, resentfulness, evil imaginings, malice, greed: these are the sources of more human pain than all the diseases that ever afflicted mortal flesh. ~A.W. Tozer

What I learned is that in Matthew 11:28-30 Jesus is basically elaborating on how to apply the meekness that he talks about in the beatitudes to our lives. “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 meek and lowly, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke fits perfectly, and the burden I give you is light. In essence this tells us the way to yoke ourselves to Jesus is to “take on” the attributes of Jesus. This is not easy for us because our first instinct is to satisfy ourselves and when we do so the burden of the world begins to weigh on us. Jesus says his burden is light. One might wonder how Jesus could give any kind of burden? I know I wondered about this. When we hear him say his burden is light, its the meekness that He is talking about. When we take on his meekness we are taking off our pride, our pretense, and our desires (that which we don’t realize the weight of) and replacing it with Jesus’ burden that is righteousness, patience and humility, which is actually the rest that our souls are searching for. This rest is only obtained by coming to Christ.

A burden means a load carried or toil borne to a point of exhaustion. Rest is simply release from that burden. It is not something we do, it is what comes to us when we cease to do. Jesus’ own meekness, that is the rest.


The freedom here is when we realize what our actual burdens are. In my last post about being yoked I failed to define the burden correctly. Our actual burden has nothing to do with any day to day activity or work. The burden we must focus on is the burden we are literally born with, the burden of inward sin. Our inward sin makes us the priority, makes us the tiny God, and makes us the hero. Our Freedom is in self-forgetfulness.

I hope this finds you well.


Jesie Browning

“There is no release from our burden apart from the meekness of Christ.”

A.W. Tozer


Published by jesiebrowning

Jesie is a mom, wife, former professional dancer/owner of The Knoxville Dance Project. She is now dedicated to momming, wifeing, and sharing the truth and freedom found through following Jesus.

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