Dear downhearted, 

I have been thinking about you… how Christmas is normally your favorite time of the year and how much you love the hustle and bustle of the season. However, the uncertainty and stress of this year have contributed to you feeling tired, stressed, and worn out. So many areas of life seem hard right now: work, relationships, health, finances, political and racial division, and significant events being rescheduled or cancelled. You feel isolated and alone. You are exhausted and weary.

Weary One, you have been on my heart since our conversation last week, the fatigue and sadness in your voice… and now you can’t see your family this Christmas, everyone uninvited because of the pandemic. I am sorry, I know how much you were longing to be with your family. Please know that I am praying for you as I write you this letter.

Since we spoke I have been thinking about your family Christmas plans and the anomaly this year of being “uninvited” to events, the disappointment we feel when plans are cancelled and our expectations are crushed, especially when we are hungry for the familiar. I found myself reflecting. Wouldn’t it be wonderful to receive an invitation that we can wholeheartedly accept without even the lingering possibility of being uninvited, knowing this invitation would not be revoked?

The truth is that we have that invitation from Jesus. He says, “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 lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light” (Matthew 11:28-30). 

Weary One, I want to encourage you to reflect on how you might respond today to Jesus’ invitation, “Come to Me. He longs for you to come as you are, with your weariness and suffering, in your brokenness, shame, and sin. Accept His invitation for true rest, the salvation of your soul. Take a minute to remember who invites you: the One who gave sight to the blind and caused the deaf to hear and the lame to walk; the One who cleansed the leper, raised the dead to life, and brought the good news to the poor (Matthew 11:5-6).

He is able to save, but He does not stop there; He invites you to more. The very Son of God wants to have an intimate relationship with you. He doesn’t want you to just know about Him.  He invites you to come to Him, sit with Him, listen to Him, and abide in Him. He loves you.

He invites you to intentionally connect yourself to Him daily, so you might learn from His gentle and lowly heart and learn to embrace the gift of limits, His yoke.

May our Lord still your weary heart with His steadfast love.