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Today, Terry Petkau urges us to be strong and faithful servants every day.

“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light.”

— Matthew 11:28-30, NKJV

Everyone needs to take time to rest as a means of regaining the strength needed for the next day. Such a simple instruction, and yet so hard for some of us to follow!

At Habitat for Humanity, we work hard because we see the exhausting challenge many parents face when moving from place to place as they try to find a safe and affordable home for their families. We see them working multiple jobs to pay for basic necessities. Each day, they face mounting bills, they see their children in unhealthy living environments, and they feel trapped. We can only imagine how difficult it must be for them to take the time needed to rest from their labors.

Habitat offers hope to families through affordable homeownership solutions. Even though the need continues to outpace what this humble ministry can offer, and our resources are stretched more each year, many people are dedicated to this wonderful ministry, putting in extra hours and making countless sacrifices to offer families a hand up.

We all know that working hard can be very rewarding, especially when our hard work results in helping a family reach their dream of homeownership. But we must not forget to rest! No matter what the task or project at work or school, there is nothing more rejuvenating than a good rest after a long day. God rewards hard work, but He also instructs us to take time to rest and recover so we can maintain our health and contribute to the best of our abilities.

Tomorrow is Sunday, one of six “little Easters” during Lent, so let’s not forget to take a break and know that our God is always there to provide the strength and energy we need for the challenging work before us. We must recognize when we are taking on too much, and, above all, we must remember that our Heavenly Father has encouraged us to rest in Him and trust Him to carry our load. That is what faith is: trusting God to carry our load.

Our God and Heavenly Father, with humble hearts, we thank You for the opportunity to leave our burdens to You. Teach us to truly rest in You so we can be strong and faithful servants each and every day.

1. Many people practice prayer and fasting during Lent. How do you feel rest applies to Lent?
2. Have you experienced times when you just don’t have time to rest or you can’t seem to rest because of the stress of your workload?
3. What are some ways we can practically rest in the Lord?
4. How can we help those around us find ways to rest rather than carry the entire burden on their own?

By Terry Petkau, national director of building services for Habitat for Humanity Canada in Waterloo, Ontario.

Download the daily Lent Reflections in full here.

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