Thursday, March 28, 2013

The better yoke

Are you feeling burdened by fundraising? Do you labor day after day toward your goal without seeing progress? Are you longing for rest?

Jesus welcomes you with these words:
"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)
If you're feeling exhausted, discouraged or "heavy laden", you may not be wearing Jesus's yoke. If that's the case, what yoke are you wearing?

Are you wearing a yoke of performance? This yoke drives you hard, requiring more and more of your time and energy - all the while promising that rest will come right after the next task is accomplished... just keep it up a little longer!

Are you wearing a yoke of satisfying others? This yoke promises you respect and praise while threatening you with loneliness if you fail. You just have to make sure people always think well of you. Surely you can handle that small task!

Are you wearing a yoke of fear? You're never sure what's coming next, but it'll probably be bad. Holding onto this yoke allows you to worry about every possible outcome so you're always prepared for the worst.

Are you wearing a yoke of success? So long as you give your whole life over to your work, you'll keep up with or even surpass others your age. Then they can't look down on you for fundraising! You'll show them...

Are you wearing a yoke of distance? This yoke requires you to not put too much trust in anyone or hope in anything. True, you'll never be happy, but at least you won't get hurt again.

Are you wearing a yoke of goodness? Just be good enough! You're so close! Just make sure you read your daily devotions, you always say something spiritual in your Small Group and you tithe 11%. Oh, and make sure you're smiling all the time.

Whether one of those describes you perfectly or it's something else altogether, Jesus is offering you a better yoke. An easy one. It doesn't mean that you'll never experience difficulty, but it does mean that you'll experience His empowering grace and all-encompassing mercy in the midst of it.

Let go of your heavy burden. Put on Jesus's yoke. Find the rest your soul longs for.