“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.” —Matthew 11:28-30

Jesus is not like the teachers of the law and Pharisees. Jesus said, “They do not practice what they preach. They tie up heavy, cumbersome loads and put them on other people’s shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to lift a finger to move them” (Matthew 23:4). No instead we are told “In fact, this is love for God: to keep his commands. And his commands are not burdensome: (I John 1:3).

It is not burdensome to follow Jesus. Religious man puts burdens on people, but Jesus does not. He does not drive people like man may do. No, Jesus leads His sheep and His sheep hear His voice and they follow Him—- “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand. (John 10:27-29). Rest in the fact that you are eternally held secure in the hands of the Father and Son!

You may have heard the illustration about the fellow who was near a watering hole when 3 different flocks showed up with their shepherds and blended into one large flock as they were watering. One of the shepherds started to walk off and called his sheep. When they heard his voice they separated from the large blended flock to follow their shepherd. Then a second shepherd did the same and his sheep separated and followed him. The man observing asked the final shepherd if he could put his shepherd’s attire on and see if the sheep would follow him. The man did put the shepherd’s attire on and then called the sheep to follow him. He may have been dressed like a shepherd, but the sheep did not recognize his voice as their shepherd and did not follow him.

Are you listening to Jesus, the Great Shepherd and resting in Him? Remember, it is Satan that seeks to drive sheep to separate them while Jesus goes before the flock and encourages them all to stay united and follow His voice. May we be doing so and experience the “rest” He offers!

Dear Father, I thank You for Jesus, our Good Shepherd. May I listen to His voice and His alone. May encourage others to do the same!

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