Advent 2014

Second Wednesday in Advent - December 10th

Is 40: 25-31 / Ps 103: 1-4, 8, 10 / Mt 11: 28-30

Are you ever really, really tired, so tired that can't even eat?  Sometimes it happens even when there are good and necessary things to do. Maybe you feel like that as final exams approach.

The message of today’s readings provides a ray of hope. God “does not faint nor grow weary “ and it promises that those who hope in him will soar like eagles.

“Yeah, right, “you say. “I don’t feel like I am soaring.” 

Jesus knew that it wasn't that simple. That's why he sends out the invitation to the place where one can find the renewal of strength. He knew that divine energy wasn't just out there for anyone to grab. He invites the people who are listening, “Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest.” He doesn't say put down your burdens or forget them. On the contrary, he asks his listeners to “Take my yoke upon you and learn from me . . . and you will find rest.”  How can taking on more provide rest?

Consider the yoke.  It harnesses animals' energy to make work easier. Two oxen of similar size are yoked together under a yoke that fits both of them. Unless the animals are similarly sized and the yoke fits both, they chafe and strain.

Consider the yoke Jesus offers. For it to be easy and light, your yoke partner must be like you. And he is. The Bible and the Creed tell us that the Son of God became one like us. Jesus is offering to pull the yoke with us. So we can “run and not grow weary”–even at the end of the semester. Talk to your yoke-partner and find out which way he wants you to pull and will pull with you.

Maureen Tilley
2011 Thomas F. Martin St. Augustine Fellow