THURSDAY OF THE FIFTEENTH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME JULY 18, 2019
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew 11:28-30
Jesus said: "Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will find rest for yourselves. For my yoke is easy, and my burden light."
Reflection: “My yoke is easy, and my burden light.”
When I was dating my husband, I wanted to do all he did. He was athletic but I wasn’t. It did not hold me back. Anything he did, I would do. One summer we decided to take scuba diving lessons together. Besides being claustrophobic, I was not a strong swimmer. Lessons were easy because they were in a clear water indoor pool and I could do all they asked.
Checkout for obtaining a certificate was quite different from my expected norm. First of all, the final exam was in a dark water lake. Then you had to be weighted down and then you walked right in til deep enough to go scuba diving. The Do’s and Don’ts were reviewed by the teacher and off we went. The weights were too heavy for me so it took awhile to get in the lake and though my future husband was by me I had great difficulty doing my first checkout which was getting myself in the water.
Once in deep water my claustrophobia was too much and I needed to get out. I was bolting up to the surface, endangering me as I was going way past the air bubbles and was in danger of getting the bends. A firm hand grabbed my ankle, held my hand and together he paced me toward the surface. He led me to safety with his firm but gentle direction.
In the times of Our Lord, oxen were hooked up to a yoke, both working toward a goal. If one of the oxen went the wrong way, they would both feel the tug and the pain of going in opposite directions. As they worked together, they realized how beneficial it was to have one oxen take the lead and set the direction.
Jesus has said, “My yoke is easy, and my burden light.” He is very patient with us, never giving up and always leading us towards His beauty and holiness. He asks us to be yoked to Him and He will take the lead and get us to safety. He forgives the errors of our ways, the poor choices we make and He will walk with us every moment of our life if we allow Him.
May we be filled with the beauty of God’s love for us. May our priests show us how easy life can be once we allow full abandonment to God’s will as a child willing to let Jesus show them the way.