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5th Sunday after Pentecost

Prayer of the Day – You are great, O God, and greatly to be praised. You have made us for yourself, and our hearts are restless until they rest in you. Grant that we may believe in you, call upon you, know you, and serve you, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord. Amen.

First Reading – Zechariah 9:9-12

Psalm – Psalm 145:8-14

Second Reading – Romans 7:15-25

Gospel – Matthew 11:16-19, 25-30

Sermon – In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, Amen.

The text for this 5th Sunday after Pentecost is taken from Matthew 11:28. “Come unto me, all you who are weary and heavy laden, and I will give you rest.”

This verse is very appropriate for us today as we continue to deal with the corona virus and the unrest in our country. The virus is bad enough, and now we have to hear about the protests, mob violence, and more killings. Many, especially among older adults, are tired of hearing this on T.V. Most involved in the protests are younger or middle aged people. And there is nothing wrong with that. But the majority of young adults in the United States are oblivious to it all. Just take a look at the crowds at the beaches. You’ve seen the clips from the news. They are at crowded beaches caring little about the spread of the virus or any protest marches. As I look back on my youth in 1964, I was no different. I figured that was an adult issue and I went about my business. Nothing wrong with that either. You should enjoy your young life. Different age categories treat things differently.

Many people are tired of listening to the news and they are getting tired of hearing so much whining and complaining. This is where God has a message for all of us, young and old alike. I personally do not thrive on living a life full of drama. I have always enjoyed peace and quiet. When my brothers and sister and I would be doing the crazy things that little kids do, I can still hear my mother saying, “Would you please give me some peace and quiet?” Maybe that’s why so many retired folks end up moving to Florida for their golden years! The kids can visit but “let’s not overdo it, O.K.?”

Besides politics and social issues, we find other ways that life weighs us down. This verse is often used at funerals. Perhaps you’ve had a loved one leave this planet, pass into Life, and go on to heaven. They may have suffered from illness at the end of their lives. Thus we have the verse. “Come unto me, all who are burdened and weary, and I will give you rest.” They finally have that rest with God, which they waited for.

People of all ages who deal with a nagging illness also get tired. They get physically and mentally tired. There are so many pills to take that you have to organize the pills. We get “sick” of the doctor visits. Sickness is one of the most difficult things in life. However, with all of the hurt that people experience they can still trudge through life with a smile. That’s where our bible verse for today comes into action. If you have peace in your heart and know where you are going, life can get better.

Jesus will not always take all our burdens away from us. He gives us the resources to keep going. Suffering can bring Christians closer to God. There is not much worse than being sick. No amount of money can make it go away. So what do you have left? Jesus’ promise of resurrection sustains us even in the deepest of our struggles. Jesus heals the pain in our souls and gives us peace and quiet. Even if you have good health, there is too much noise in this world. People would do better to set back for a spell and sit in a quiet place and meditate, pray, or simply be quiet. No noise, no static, no drama. Turn off all devices.

Place your burdens and yokes on Christ. He died for us and took on our sins. We should trade the yokes that seem to hold us back for Jesus’ yoke that redeems our efforts. With Jesus’ yoke, we in the family and in the Church together, sharing the load and sustaining each other. Perhaps those in our country on all sides would do well if they took this advice. We have a God of peace and love. We have a resurrected Son of God in Jesus Christ who promised to take those who believe in him to eternal life. We rejoice also that we can take our burdens to Jesus, who offers us rest. While you are living here, may God bless you with peace and quiet! God grant us this faith, in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.




Bible verses to help combat fear and give us peace:

Psalm 56:3-4

Isaiah 35:3-4

Isaiah 41:10

Isaiah 60:1-2

Matthew 6:25-34

Matthew 14:25-33

Mark 4:35-41

Luke 8:22-25

John 14:27

Philippians 4:6-7

2 Timothy 1:7