when you’re weary and burdened and simply need rest


My family and I are on Hilton Head Island in South Carolina. The sweet tea is sweet, the island breeze glorious, and the Southern sun has branded itself right into my skin. (Why is it that sunburns always seemed sort of romantic in my head? I’m a silly girl. In reality all they are is sore.) I was sitting on the beach and I felt the sand squishing between my toes and the sun was beating down on my shoulders and I was not so secretly hoping my skin was quickly turning a shimmery golden glow (because on the swim suit ads all the girls have amazing golden skin) and suddenly out of nowhere my 3 lb. brain was bombarded with thoughts.

Why is there an ocean of water surrounding me when in Rwanda I walked with children for hours to get only one small bucket of water? Why am I thinking about tanning when there is world poverty to solve? Why do I have the audacity to sit here on my multicoloured beach chair while my African friends are wondering how they will feed their children their next meal? Why am I still feeling sad inside? Wasn't home supposed to be comfort and contentment and sheer satisfaction?

And why is my heart tired? Why is my heart so, so tired?

Come to Me, all who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.

Yesterday we went on a family bike ride because my dad had dubbed it "Adventure Monday" and apparently on Adventure Monday you go on 4 hour 15 mile family bike rides.

I flew.

I took my shoes off and placed them in my basket, and with my bare feet on the pedals, I took off.  I could feel the wind going through my hair and it brushed against my cheeks and the sun winked at me through the sleepy mossy trees. I pushed my toes as hard as I could against the pedals and pumped and pumped and pumped and then I coasted, the wind propelling me towards South Beach. My brother called to me to slow down, but I didn't want to slow. I wanted to sprint ahead and soar.

And then all at once I grew tired. My body grew so, so tired.

Come to Me, all who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.

Oh dear Lord, give me rest. Give me rest.

I often find myself trying to sprint ahead. I want to get to the destination and I want to get there fast. But my dad reminded me the other day: sometimes when you're rushing to get to the destination, you're simply missing the unforgettable journey.

In my heart of hearts, I feel as though rest seems terribly and completely unfair after being in Rwanda for 2 months and seeing their lives and hearing their stories. But tonight I must break down and ask for rest. I'm afraid without it I will never be able to continue on.

My Jesus, give me rest. And give my friends in Africa rest, too.

Come to Me, all who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.