Who doesn’t like new? I guess there are those who only like antiques and such, but I think most really enjoy the new! The new smell in that new car, a new house, new job, new sneakers!
I’m happy to report a great victory for a nephew of mine. He’s one year into a “new life” working towards full recovery from a life-controlling addiction that had stolen his joy, peace, and hope and tried to take his future too! Now, if you ask him about wanting to go forward or backward, he will tell you that he only wants to stay on course with this New Life that he is discovering. He will also say that God is his strength and deliverer. There were, and still are, many different people who God placed and will always place on his path to help him move forward, but we all know that ultimately it will be up to him (his own will) to surrender every single day!
This is where God steps in and picks up our burden. He will never overrule anyone’s own will. It’s ours.
““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 NIV
It is sad to hear those who are being dragged around by addiction say that going to church and reading the Bible is so boring. I pray for those who are bound, that they would believe those like myself and my nephew when we say that there is no power in our own strength to walk away from a futureless life. When Jesus said to come to HIM for rest, He wasn’t just saying it to farmers. He was using a parable (analogy) to communicate it to the culture at that time. And that invitation still stands today!
Now, what is a yoke? According to Merrian-Webster’s Dictionary:
1a : a wooden bar or frame by which two draft animals (such as oxen) are joined at the heads or necks for working together.
What is your yoke today? Alcohol? Over-eating? Fear and depression? Unbelief? Anger? Millions of recovered addicts and emotionally bound people will attest to the wonderful and life-changing God we have. His love for us is true! He is our resting place, and He takes our yokes and burdens and lifts them off of us. He gives us TRUE rest. The one that can be found only in Him! This is what love looks like.
I would do anything if I could to lift the yokes and burdens of life off my children (they are adults now and understand what this means), but I can’t. However, what I can do, and I do, is pray for them. That they would allow Jesus to carry their yokes and burdens as well.
This is Resurrection week. The time of year we celebrate when Jesus took on the yokes and burdens of the entire world past, present, and future.
All we need to do is believe in Him. He will explain all things to us through His Holy Spirit. When Jesus was leaving the disciples to return to heaven, He promised not to abandon them by sending the Holy Spirit to teach and guide them (and us) in all Truth.
But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.
John 14:26 ESV
“But when the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, he will bear witness about me.
John 15:26 ESV
But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
Acts 1:8 ESV
Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you.
John 16:7 ESV
And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever,
John 14:16 ESV
May you find the “New Life” you seek, in Christ alone. Amen.
Love you all. Happy Resurrection Day!