“‘Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light’” (Matthew 11:28-30).
Newell Fox and his wife, Virginia, have been members of Southeast Christian Church since 1996. Fox enjoys biking around his neighborhood in the Hurstbourne area, and he and his wife are faithful members of the 2-by-2 weekend group.
Fox, 84, was born in the small town of Vevay, Indiana, and grew up in Madison, Indiana.
Though he spent his whole life going to church, Fox remembers few specifics from the sermons he heard early in life.
“I grew up in the church, but I didn’t really pay that much attention,” Fox said. “I went because I knew it was what I was supposed to do.”
On October 17, 1977, at age 43, Fox was sitting in a church service and read Matthew 11:28-30.
“I had been in business for myself,” Fox said. “When I heard those verses, I realized that I needed a lot more help than I was asking for.”
In Matthew 11, Jesus was likely speaking to a crowd in a synagogue in one of the towns of the Galilee region of Israel. Jesus invited the crowd to take off the yoke of trying to earn favor with God through striving and righteous piety, and to accept the true spiritual rest that comes from trusting in Jesus as the Son of God.
Fox prayed for God to forgive him of his sins, and he put his trust in Jesus. He’s trusted the Lord to take care of him since.
“God has been so good to me and my family,” Fox said. “He has taken care of me, and He has sustained me. I owe my life to Him.”
Fox said that when he gave his life to Jesus, he changed for the better. Life has not always been easy, but he has been able to find true rest by “leaning on the everlasting arms.”