For Such A Time As This

Maximizing everyday moments to glorify God

"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28

on June 18, 2010

I am spending a week at the beach and loving it. This place is truly special to me and is the place where I feel most connected to the Lord. Last year, it was where I poured out my heart to Him and He answered with a specific direction for my life.

Yesterday morning I was up to take my morning walk on the beach. I always approach it with some level of expectancy because it’s generally pretty secluded and I can lose myself in praise and prayer while traveling north toward Caladesi Island State Park in north Clearwater Beach.

I found myself captured by the creatures along the low tide shoreline, many of whom were frantically trying to scurry themselves back into the Gulf of Mexico. Only a foot or two from the water, they scratched and clawed their way towards the bubbling waves that would take them back to the safety of the water. And then, I watched the birds. Those little, fast-moving opportunistic critters moving along the water’s edge searching for food. They ebbed and flowed with the tide, carefully avoiding getting in the water.

The contrast really jumped out at me. Isn’t that how I approach the Lord sometimes? Aren’t there times when I am desperately clinging to Him, seeking Him and longing to be completely immersed in Him? And yet, aren’t there other times when I think I can skim along the edge and get just close enough to get by without truly diving in and trusting fully? Those thoughts captivated me while I traveled the water’s edge. Thinking about those creatures whose every action is geared at just getting back to the safety and comfort of total surrender to the water of life made me long for that mindset. The birds reminded me of how often I think I can tiptoe just close enough that I think I’m relying on Him when, in fact, I think I’ve got it all under control. Thinking about that gripped my heart and convicted me that I need to make every effort to by more like the animals who knew they were nothing outside of full immersion into the water. I am nothing without full immersion, full surrender to the Lord.

And then, something very interesting occurred. As I trekked along watching this scene play out along the shore and in my mind, I encountered a couple walking the opposite direction. Every so often they would stop and I noticed the man would stoop down and toss something in the water. The closer I got to them, I realized he was picking up those desperate creatures and gently returning them to the safety of the Gulf. That really struck a chord in my heart. That couple was going along and whenever they could, they stopped to redirect the course of one of those creatures, literally breathing life back in them with their effort. As Christians, aren’t we fortunate to have people in our lives who help redirect us and bring us back closer to God just when we need it? People who travel along and step in when you are most desperate and help us find our way back to the beauty of total immersion in the Lord.

I finished my walk with a spring in my step. As I did, the words of this passage in Matthew’s Gospel filled my heart. “Come to me,” Jesus said. Come and unload your burdens. We can be just like the shoreline creatures, when the weight of the shell they live in becomes heavy after they are removed from their protector. We become loaded down with the troubles of life when we try to carry them ourselves. Then Jesus says, “come to me” and offers sweet relief. God paints such a beautiful picture for us in simple, every day things. If we’re willing to be open to the message, He will speak in ways that will keep our focus just where it ought to be.


2 responses to “"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28

  1. Patti, This post is so timely for me. I have been so business tiptoeing on the edge of the dream God has given me. It is time for accecpt the help of other and get back into the water, "the living water"

  2. phzlt says:

    Amy, let's both just dive in! Deal? =)

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