You Shall Find Rest For Your Soul: Matthew 11:28-30
“29) … and you shall find rest for your souls.”
This is one of the great benefits of coming to Jesus. Mankind was created with three parts. We are body, soul and spirit. Many scholars see the soul as the seat of the intellect, the emotions and the will.
When the soul is fed a constant diet of negativity it is where fear, worry, stress, anxiety, anger and gloom are generated. But when the soul is managed and fed properly, it can become the location of positive emotions like happiness, love, joy, peace and a positive outlook.
Notice that Jesus invited those who are weary and heavy laden to come to Him. The storms of life have a way of dragging down the human soul. The past three years of Covid and lockdowns have brought unprecedented depression to people around the world. I have never witnessed a time of more global weariness and discouragement.
It is during times like these that this promise of Jesus shines like light in darkness; “… and you shall find rest for your souls.”
I can affirm that intensional and consistent focus on Him, His Word, the inner Holy Spirit and praise changes the temperament of the soul. It brings more than just rest, it totally transforms a persons attitudes and outlook.
Philippians 4:4-9 is a powerful commentary on these words of Jesus. This context clarifies that this is not merely a passive trust in Jesus. He was talking about active and intensional prayer, praise and worship. This is a conscious act of “coming to Him” with our requests. It involves seeking Him and having a two-way meeting with Him. It includes casting our cares and anxiety upon Him. (1 Peter 5:7)
When we come to Him for salvation and ongoing relationship, we are engrafted into Him as our vine. (John 15:1-17) The human spirit comes alive and is filled with His Spirit. This opens the way for the fruit of the Spirit to flood into the human soul. (See Galatians 5:22-24)
But these fruits are not forced upon the believer. They are available, but can be ignored or resisted. They are the by-product of consciously and continually seeking Him.
I know many gloom and doom Christians today. They have no love, joy, peace or happiness in their lives. They’re inner well has totally dried up. They are some of the most complaining, negative and depressed people I know.
I feel like grabbing them and saying; “Look at me!” Once I have their attention I would say; “Shut off your television, stop filling your soul with Hollywood smut, turn off the news networks, detach from the gloom vine and have a long overdue meeting with Jesus!” I would basically point them to Matthew 11:28-30 and say “Seek Him; it will change your life!”
It works! I know many on fire, victorious, fruitful and overflowing Christians today. I meet them all around the world. I am one of them! What is the secret?
Are you ready to listen? We all seek Jesus intentionally every day and sincerely try to walk in the Spirit. Sure we have struggles, problems and trials, but we face them with Jesus at our side. We run to Him and not from Him. We have laid aside the weights and sins that so easily entangle and instead have fixed our eyes on Jesus. (See Hebrews 12:1-2) In the process of building a daily walk with God, we have found rest for our souls!
This is not bragging, it is merely a sincere testimony that what Jesus promised He delivers for those who seek Him! You can find rest for your soul. You can also have rivers of living water flowing from your innermost being. (John 7:37-39) Jesus came that we might have life, and might have it abundantly. (John 10:10b) It takes time to reap the benefits of a daily walk with God, but it is a value that has no comparison in this life.
If you have gotten off track, He is eager to get you back in the race. If you have never invited Jesus Christ into your life, do it right now. Matthew 11:28-30 is your invitation.
Daily Bible Commentary By Terry Baxter: Cofounder of GoServ Global