*This is something that I wrote seven years ago. I thought it was completely lost due to my last blog site abruptly shutting down, without warning. Thanks to Facebook Memories, I was able to copy what I shared in 2011…and present it, here. What a precious thing the Lord did, this morning, by bringing this back to me. And lesson learned…back up EVERYTHING!!
I read something, the other day, that has been on my heart ever since. I am currently reading “Victory Over the Darkness – Realizing the Power of Your Identity in Christ” by Neil T. Anderson. In it, he says:
“Jesus invites you to a restful walk in tandem with Him, just as two oxen walk together under the same yoke. ‘How can a yoke be restful?’ you ask. Because Jesus’ yoke is an easy yoke. As the lead ox, Jesus walks at a steady pace. If you pace yourself with Him, your burden will be easy. But if you take a passive approach to the relationship, you’ll be painfully dragged along in the yoke because Jesus keeps walking. Or if you try to race ahead or turn off in another direction, the yoke will chafe your neck and your life will be uncomfortable. The key to a restful yoke-relationship with Jesus is to learn from Him and open yourself to His gentleness and humility.” (p. 102)
When we become Christ-followers, God doesn’t want to leave us where we are…He wants to change us and He wants to use us. So, Christ comes along beside us and gently leads us in the way we should go.
Now, I guess there are some people who are easy-going enough to fall right into step with Christ…although, I have yet to meet anyone who was able to do so without some sort of struggle…and most require a knock-down, drag-out fight. Most of us are so used to leading that we have a difficult time allowing someone else to do the guiding. The thought of someone else calling the shots can be, for some, downright anxiety inducing.
What if He leads me somewhere I don’t want to go? What if He makes me do something I don’t want to do? Will He abandon me? What if I give up all control and my life just falls apart…what then? (worry, worry, worry)
But the Word says, “The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” Deuteronomy 31:8
Or, how about those times we get so stuck in the past that we are useless in the present? These are the times when we can feel Him pulling (or dragging) us.
The Word says, “…but one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:13-14
And then there are those times when we have decided that we are better off taking the reigns and begin to do things our way…because OUR way just makes better sense!
How’s your neck? Feeling a bit uncomfortable?
The Word says, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11
I’m (slowly) learning that if I feel like I’m being dragged, then maybe I am spending too much time looking back. Sometimes I look back to a time when things were easier…when life was a little less complicated. Or, perhaps I’m reliving a painful situation and I forget…Christ has already set me free…all I have to do is step in tandem with Him…trusting Him and knowing that with each step, I am finding my healing for past wounds.
If I’m struggling, then chances are I’m trying to do things my own way. The Lord leads me down paths that I don’t always understand (Isaiah 55:8-9). He may be refining me…building my character. Perhaps, I have done something outside of His will and I’m being disciplined. And sometimes, He just needs me to be somewhere, to do something that He has planned in advance for me to do (Ephesians 2:10)…somewhere I never would have ended up if I did life on my own.
Trust Him when He says:
“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