Fourteenth Sunday in Ordinary time – Year A
Gospel: Matthew 11:25-30
At that time Jesus said, “I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and the intelligent and have revealed them to infants; yes, Father, for such was your gracious will. All things have been handed over to me by my Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal him. “Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, 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.”
In Matthew 12, we hear about the Pharisees who were making the Jewish religion very complicated and difficult. It consisted of ‘don’t do this’ and ‘don’t do that’. Theirs was a religion of 600 religious rules and regulations and rituals that people were expected to know and follow. The religion of the Pharisees had become a burden, like a heavy yoke on the people’s shoulders. This was the situation that Jesus was addressing. They had taken the Jewish religion and had sucked the life out of it. The letter of the law had become more important than the spirit of the law.
The message of Jesus however was simple and positive. To love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind and soul and your neighbour as yourself. Jesus’ yoke, is easy compared to the Pharisees with all their harsh, negative rules.
“Come to me all you who are weary and heavy laden and I will give you rest.” also has a very personal meaning. What heavy burdens are you carrying in your life? Talk to Jesus about this now…
The Footprints Prayer
One night I had a dream…
I dreamed I was walking along the beach with the Lord, and across the sky flashed scenes from my life. For each scene I noticed two sets of footprints in the sand; one belonged to me, and the other to the Lord. When the last scene of my life flashed before us, I looked back at the footprints in the sand. I noticed that many times along the path of my life, there was only one set of footprints.
I also noticed that it happened at the very lowest and saddest times in my life this really bothered me, and I questioned the Lord about it. “Lord, you said that once I decided to follow you, you would walk with me all the way; but I have noticed that during the most troublesome times in my life, there is only one set of footprints. I don’t understand why in times when I needed you the most, you should leave me?”
The Lord replied, “My precious, precious child. I love you, and I would never, never leave you during your times of trial and suffering. When you saw only one set of footprints, it was then that I carried you.”
Thought for the week…
“I will give you rest…”
Help me realise I am not alone with my heavy burdens.
Thank You, I love you Jesus, Amen.