"A bruised reed he will not break, and a smouldering wick he will not snuff out."
- Isaiah 42:3
We all know what it is like to feel like a bruised reed and a smouldering wick. They are both images of weakness. Relationships, work, loss, and pain can all sap our strength and rob us of joy. It is in those times when we need to know the tender touch of God.
I am tired today. Certain burdens are weighing especially heavy. Too often I depend on the approval of others which always results in wounds and disappointment. I am a sinful man and I live among other sinful men. The reality can be overwhelming. But what I need is not more approval or to work harder. What I need is Jesus.
Thanks to Ray Ortland for the following post. I neede this today (and a lot of days for that matter).
"Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest."
The sacred center of Christianity is Christ himself. Coming personally to the Person. Coming directly to the Mediator. No one but Jesus can call us with such authority, and no one but Jesus can encourage us with such a promise. No one else can give us rest.
If our functional purpose in church is to connect with one another and build community, that's what we'll get -- one another. And we'll end up angry. Only Jesus gives us rest. If we will put him first and come to him first, we'll have something to give one another.
If our functional purpose in church is outreach and mercy and justice and all those good missional things, we'll end up exhausted and empty. Only Jesus gives us rest. If we will put him first and come to him first, we'll be renewed for endless mission.
Only One has ever said and can ever say, "Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." His offer stands. But he comes first.