Today’s Gospel: Matthew 11:28-30
“My yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Like a runner’s high, it’s easier to accept Jesus’ promise at face value after I’ve gone on my run. Over my lifetime, I’ve come to realize that one can experiences the unburdening only after acknowledging the suffering. And therein is our participation with God’s great mystery.
In the verses that precede today’s Gospel, Jesus praises His Father for the treasures He has hidden from the wise but revealed to children. This was the passage my late pastor chose to proclaim at the funeral for my son, Joshua Emet. The passage goes on to talk about the union of Father and Son: “No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son wishes to reveal him.”
How true the words were in the heart of a grieving dad on that day. And how true Jesus’ words are now about the yoke that has been given to me. Sometimes it is heavy, sometimes it is light.
More recently, I came across this passage as part of a prayer the priests in our parish say as they put on their vestments before mass. Some of the language of the prayer speaks of their vestments like armor being put on to fight against evil. But the final vestment, the chasuble, is put on as an emblem of charity “which makes the yoke of Christ light and agreeable.”
It is not easy to take up our crosses every day. But we do respond to charity. We do wish to know the Father through the Son.
We do recognize when our burdens are lifted. How can we do the same for others?
O Lord, you said, “My yoke is sweet and my burden is light,”
Grant that I may carry it so as to obtain your grace. Amen.
Copyright 2019 Jay Cuasay
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