Come to me, all 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
A SPIRITUAL INTERVENTION (18)
The Christian faith walk is a spiritual journey in which our destiny and purpose plays out on a daily basis. The longer we walk in closeness of unity, the more we will become like the One we follow. There are some requirements. One requirement is that we quit doing life our way and start doing it God’s way.
Part of taking the yoke is what comes with it. We are told, “and learn from me.” That is pretty specific. There is a lot to learn, but we must be willing learners. It’s not our deal, it is God’s. Now, that doesn’t sound too hard unless you think it will crimp your style or inhibit your excesses. But, I do believe it keeps many people from wanting to “take His yoke.” You see, there is a giving up that is going on and then a change of focus from self-interest to God-interest. What can help a person let go of bondage to these things is by seeking to know and love God. When our love for God flowers into radiant life, then also our desire is for God and not as much for the temporary things of life.
Submitting to God’s yoke is acquired through intention. It takes our personal initiative and the act of seeking God with our heart, mind, and soul. By taking His yoke upon us and then learning from Him as we work as a team, we will find a key that opens us to find immediate access to God and His truth. We can’t learn freely from Him until we surrender our “me” that has been occupying the throne of our life.
We must abandon ourselves to God until it is God occupying the throne of our life. This often requires a frequent submitting of our will to Him. When we do so, it changes the whole spiritual dynamic we have with God.
We may know how to climb a mountain using crampons and ropes and all the right tools for mountain climbing but until we actually climb the mountain using these tools, it has only been a mental preparation. We don’t become a mountain climber until we climb the mountain. We can know all about loving God and following God, but until we begin loving God and following God in our reality, we have not done it. It must become part of us for it to be real in us.
This opens a capacity within us to hear God and internalize His plans for us.
The learning is a consecration process. It is not something we seek externally, an adding on, but rather, it is an allowing of God to meet us where we are at in an internal state of change. He becomes a well-spring inside of us by releasing His cleansing fountain to make us into pure vessels as objects that have Christ’s stamp, His identifying mark for all to see. We will learn God’s daily purposes, not only the long-term plans. God will remove the dross, the many, many foreign particles, sins and issues, that don’t belong in our lives and which have deflected from His life in us.
In our surrendered life, we have a greater capacity to learn from Him and of Him. God is more fully active in our mind and heart. We allow a transforming to take place by submitting our lives to God and to His yoke. God will revolutionize our life. Then we give it all up to Him and let go of our agenda, both positive and negative issues and things in our lives, our hopes, our dreams, our plans, our desires, our wants, our right to vengeance, our rights to happiness and self-fulfillment and so forth. When we have done this, and only then, will we truly learn what God would have us to learn, know, and understand within the intimacy of a Father to child meaningful relationship.
In this, we ascertain that it involves our heart-knowledge and not just our head-knowledge. It is not just listening, believing, or knowing all the right scriptures, correct theology, or scripted answers. That is half of the equation. It requires involving the emotions and the will in active willingness to follow God and to learn from Him. This is when spiritual life becomes exceedingly wonderful.
The learning becomes a way to live life. It is never satiated. We want more of God than we had yesterday. We are in a constant state of interactive dependence on God in a loving and reciprocal relationship. We won’t be able to stop growing and changing because we’re loving it and loving Him. Nothing will stop this new way of living unless we turn away, quit yielding to God, and return to being our own source and guide.
Few turn away from following God at this stage once close intimacy of relationship with God is established. At this depth of learning, we begin to know God in an ever-expanding awareness. It becomes “meat” to our souls and “delight” to our beings. Our lives have flip-flopped. What once was ordinary has now become spectacular and beautiful. People who walk in close intimacy of relationship with God have a unique beauty that attracts notice.
Something has awakened in us that responds to God with pure love. We have crossed over.
Now we are living our spiritual life out of love instead of out of duty. Through the joining of God with human, the journey has enlivened and broken free of formalized spiritual conventions. It is no longer religion or spiritual beliefs, it becomes you and God and God and you, a yoke formed and bound in loving relationship with Him in the lead position guiding us in on our daily journey.
We have learned, we answer to God first.
The character of God infuses into our character as a form of Christ-likeness which comes through the seeking and finding. It is a beautiful work of God in our lives. Praises to Him.
©N. L. Brumbaugh