Things to Ponder
I use this page to share messages of an inspirational nature, or simply something to ponder. It is my hope that you will always be inspired.
Felicita "Terry" Robinson
Visit the Archives below for past messages
Reflections - Gospel of Matthew 11:25-30
INTRODUCTION: JESUS - A COMFORT ZONE
After several, previous Sunday readings from Matthew’s Gospel in which he stressed the difficulties, sense of abandonment from family and friends, and even persecutions in following the Way of Jesus – Matthew does a refreshingly 180 degree turn and focuses on the comfort and rest we can find in our following of Him. Yes. The Gospel is harsh. Often hard. But in Jesus, you and I can discover a “comfort zone” even in the midst of our worries, burdens, and even our weariness. And isn’t that Good News?
Scripture commentaries have described this Gospel selection as one of the most beautiful passages in the entire New Testament. For in this Gospel reading, Jesus is baring his inner soul and is risking transparency and openness to his followers. He speaks of His loving and unique relationship to His Father (a poignant father-son relationship) – and His deep desire to embrace us in our weakness, our wounds, and our weariness. This is our very own “Comfort Zone Jesus.” Who would not be attracted to a person who welcomes us “as we are?” Who warmly invites to carry our burdens?
Although following the Way of Jesus and His values can often be uncomfortable and at times inconvenient, the yoke of the Master is light – compared with the quantity of rules (1,000+ Mosaic regulations/laws) that the people of the Old Testament had to follow and that made life difficult and burdersome. In contrast, Jesus’ way of holiness is presented as uncomplicated and even restful.
In Jesus, we discover a relationship. A friendship? And in this relationship (and not in a static rule), you and I can find the meaning of things and in which direction to go. “Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest.” Indeed. In the midst of our life’s burdens, we are offered a refreshing “comfort zone.” Jesus. And the best news of all? It’s an open invitation!
I would invite you to take time to read and ponder the words from the Gospel of Matthew 11:25-30.
What word or words caught your attention?
What in this passage comforted you?
What in this passage challenged you?
What difference does it make when Jesus takes my burdens on His shoulders? Do I find rest?
Further Reflections and Questions:
Sometimes life’s burdens can overwhelm us (the pandemic?), and we live with uncertainty and the fear that we will be swallowed up in despair and lack of hope. Here in this beautiful passage of Scripture, Jesus offers us a lifeline. “Come to me,” He says. Sounds simple, doesn’t it? And yet we find it difficult to believe that reaching out to Him can make a difference. Why is that?
Lord, you invite us to take your hand and walk with you through this “valley of tears.” How stubborn we can be sometimes. Help us to be open to your invitation and respond with faith and generosity.
Lord, I do not ask that you bring my life completely under control. To be mortal is to face uncomfortable realities. I beg you to be my uncomfortable comfort zone.
Lord, I need to allow this gentle and powerful Gospel invitation to touch my heart. As I listen to its echoes, I try to get in touch with my weariness, the heavy burdens I am carrying—and respond with trust that I will indeed find rest—a comfort zone.
Lord, I ask for the grace to be among the “little ones” in this Sunday’s Gospel. I depend on you, as a child. You are always there for me and with me. My lifeline. My comfort zone. Thank you!
As we celebrate July 4th this weekend, I would invite you to reflect on two special questions:
1. What gifts do we possess as a beloved nation?
2. What challenges do we face as a country?
Homily for Sunday, July 5,2020
Deacon David Suley
St. Patrick Catholic Church
Published with Permission