BECOMING SPIRITUALLY ATTRACTIVE

 
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MATTHEW 11:25-30

25  At that time Jesus answered and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes. 26  Even so, Father: for so it seemed good in thy sight. 27  All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him. 28  Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29  Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. 30  For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

Christ begins with praise and thanksgiving unto our "Father, Lord of heaven and earth." We need to be clear on the things we can do to please God. Obviously, praise and thankgiving are high on that list. We also see a peculiar advantage we have in God's plan, unless you're among "the wise and prudent." Consider what all He "hast revealed" to you already!

It's ridiculous to assume we somehow stumbled upon the divine revelation of God. Yahweh God is shown to "whomsover the Son will reveal Him." What a humbling revelation that Christ has deliberately chosen to reveal the truth of God to you! NOW GOD WANTS US TO PLEASE HIM SO HE CAN BLESS US MORE ABUNDANTLY.

Christ here extends a personal invitation to those who fit a certain criteria: "all ye that labour and are heavy laden." This cannot apply to those who never do anything or don't even care. In fact, it's to those who have worked so hard but maybe realize they'll never be able to come out from under the pressure on their own. Christ introduces His approach to life which brings peace and greater blessing.

Accepting this invitation will involve giving Him the reins of your life. He wants you to remove the load you bear so He can accomplish something greater thru your life. We find that He is a Good Master Who has His servants' best interest at heart. In fact, He desires to replace our obvious stress with something beautiful and positive.

MATTHEW 11:25-26

25  At that time Jesus answered and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes. 26  Even so, Father: for so it seemed good in thy sight.

Here we're reminded of the quality of relationship Israelites are to have with God; He is our "Father" and we are His "babes." This reveals the intimacy God has with those to whom He has been revealed. He is the Almighty God Who created all things and we are His little "babes." As He continues to instill His wisdom into you, you will continue to grow closer to Him.

Notice also your Father is "Lord" or the Sovereign "of heaven and earth." Being sovereign, He has full control. Do you believe your Father has full control over everything in the universe? Do you want Him to have full control over your life? Then you'll have no problem accepting Christ's invitation.

Nothing happens by accident and everything has been set up exactly the way God wants it. He has deliberately "hid these things" from those we would consider the most qualified- "the wise and the prudent." In turn He chose to reveal these things for instance, to a bunch of rough fishermen and a tax collector. He passes over all the 'experts' to reach people like us. Christ said He has chosen to do this because it pleases Him. Therefore, if you're just an ordinary white person, look at the huge opportunity He has provided for you!

There will therefore be no excuse for not heeding this call. Imagine the future opportunities and blessings for those who will take heed to these words! Think about it, His ultimate glory would not be possible if He chose to do His work thru the most gifted and outstanding. GOD HAS SET EVERYTHING UP TO RECEIVE HIS ULTIMATE GLORY THRU PEOPLE JUST LIKE US! This is another reason why the truth has never been popular or 'mainstream' because only a remnant of Israelites in every generation seem to 'get it' while the rest remain blinded.

MATTHEW 11:27-28

27  All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him. 28  Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

Of course, Christ knew the Father, He and the Father are One as He informs us elsewhere (John 10:30). Yet in order for any of us to have the knowledge of Him, it must be revealed to us by Christ. As you can see, this invitation is for those who work hard and assume their responsibilities. Yet we see they need and/or desire more, it's just too much for them to accomplish on their own. Christ is looking to help those who are trying to carry more than they are able to bear.

After a hard days work, there's nothing we enjoy more than a good meal and some "rest." Just like when someone's been carrying a heavy burden, nothing feels better than to lay that burden down. If you're serious about following Christ, you must be willing to lay it all aside; the pressure, the burdens, the stress of life- everything you are depending on. If you'll meet His request, you'll be on the road to receiving what you've always longed for. This will be the end of you trying to do it on your own, and the beginning of a new life under new direction.

IF CHRIST HAS REVEALED THE TRUTH TO YOU THAT IS THE INDICATOR THAT YOU ARE ONE OF THOSE HE HAS CHOSEN TO ALIGN WITH HIS ULTIMATE GLORY. God has set this thing up partly for your benefit! This puts our purpose and our future in a whole other light.

If what has characterized your life to this point has been struggling under the weight of trying to make it on your own, Christ is inviting you to come to Him and release the pressure. Our response to this invitation proves whether or not we've truly received His revelation.

What do others see when they look at our lives? Do they see us at peace, or do they see us crumbling under the pressure just like they are? What's the point in claiming we've received divine revelation from God, if when it comes right down to it, we refuse to obey what He has said? Coming to Christ is coming on His terms. THE ONLY WAY WE CAN ALIGN WITH HIS ULTIMATE GLORY IS BY TOTAL SURRENDER:

MATTHEW 11:29-30

29  Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. 30  For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

His "yoke" doesn't pertain to the neck, but to the heart. Christ will not settle for anything less than our all. For He knows if He has your heart, you will not resist His guidance. So come to Him if you're ready to lay it all on the line. He reveals the truth to His people for this purpose.

What happens after we give Him our heart? He says, "learn of me," for He is "meek and lowly of heart." This magnifies the supremacy of His power because He is able to accomplish His purposes, not thru external force and pressure, but by love. Christ isn't some drill sergeant shouting out orders. He calmly offers His invitation by a still, small voice from within you. This is why all distractions and demands must be laid aside, to give Him our undivided attention and deepest devotion.

Understand, Christ did not come to place additional pressure or burdens upon you. Nor is this an invitation to exchange an old set of external rituals for new ones. The pressures and burdens we find ourselves under, we allow and even place there ourselves. That's why we must voluntarily lay them aside. His desire is for us to be released from all the pressure, filling us with peace and confidence, as He teaches us to serve Him as a labor of love.

According to this, His "yoke is easy" and His "burden is light." We must not think for one second we've come to Christ if the yoke is still too difficult and the burden is still too much to bear. Therefore it's ridiculous to call ourselves followers of Christ if we still continue to carry our self-imposed yokes and burdens. For it does no good for another white who remains under their load, to see someone who claims to be a follower of Christ, who is no different. There is nothing spiritually attractive about someone who still appears to be defeated. Set yourself free from what's pulling you down, and give your whole heart to the loving Christ of the Scriptures!

How can we know if we've done it? When you're no longer "weary and heavy laden" and Christ has given you "rest"! When you're able to "rest" and have peace of mind, you've truly come to Christ, holding nothing back. You have voluntarily taken up His yoke where you're trusting Him to take care of you- you cannot crumble, you cannot fail; you are His ambassador. Our only burden then is to maintain our spiritual attractiveness for the glory of God.

This is the answer to being more effective at reaching those around you. When we've tried to reach others, could it be they see no peace, they still see in us someone who is weighed down with the same pressures? Sometimes we feel no one else will ever come to the truth thru us. Maybe its just a matter of recognizing your need to once and for all sell out to Christ by letting go of the pressure and burdens saying, "Come what may, I'm going to trust my Father."

People will come to faith thru us when they see no fear in us. They will trust in Him thru us, when they recognize all our doubts are gone. They will be drawn by His love thru us when hate is no longer our main focus. The Gospel will be attractive to others thru us when they actually see what a difference the power of Christ has made in us, from the inside out.

Pray God will help every Israelite to recognize their need for His rest. Christ never intended for us to do it all ourselves; that's why He came. Yes He did die for our sins, but He also said many things which are not being taught today, and that's why our people have no power and the message seems so unattractive. RIGHT NOW, WE ARE THE PROBLEM, BUT THRU CHRIST, WE WILL BECOME THE SOLUTION! The most effective weapon we can possess spiritually is a clear, peaceful mind that longs to hear His voice, and wants the needs of others to be met.

REFLECTION

The way you choose to live is based on your concept of God. The way we see God directly and indirectly has a tremendous impact on every area of our lives. What kind of God do you want your life to reflect?