Monday, August 30, 2010

yoke



For everyday I am alive I imagine myself sowing seeds.

Every action I make will have a consequence -- if I am friendly I will most likely get friends; if I am angry, I most likely will make others around me so; if I am gentle and kind, I create an atmosphere of warmth and trust.

It's an image that I learned when I was young, being taught that what I sow, I will reap.  When I first heard it, I thought it was a good story and a good way of looking at things, since I knew that all seeds grow and no matter what happens I should sow more good seeds than bad.

Then I would go out to play.

As I get older, the same images of sowing and reaping mean something more.  Seeds, or actions, are not equal in their fruit.  An apple seed begets a tree; a thistle seed can spring up and ruin a whole field; the small dandelion can travel miles before sinking into soft soil, only to start the whole process over again.  Seeds are everywhere, and are born from the happy event of a flower.  It all seems so harmless and easy, but after awhile, you understand the good seeds you've sown are not always good, but rather dangerous and can have consequences that beget other consequences, and so on and so on...  If you do contemplate awhile, you hope and pray that your reap will not be what you deserve.

I have recently come across a field of seeds that have sprung up from past actions. In sowing, I never meant to hurt anyone, but I admit I sowed selfishly.  As I look back, the whole thing was avoidable, but I know I can learn from all of this.   I begin the work of getting all of the seed out of the ground, and in realize I can't.  In a million years, I could never remove everything I have sown.

It's then that I remember that I have become  "yoked" with Christ.  His work is my work; we are teamed side-by-side.  The yoke I wear is not fair: I deserve to be far away from a righteous and forgiving Saviour.  His yoke is for the elect; the children who are lovely and lovable...and today that's not me.  I'm the hunchback  ugly selfish conceited loudmouth who humiliates herself and the cause of the Kingdom.  Still, I wear the yoke, and walk beside the good and perfect Jesus, whose yoke is easy because of His love and His genuine affection for me.  It is this love that transforms me.

The yoke, to the outside world, looks like slavery.  It looks like torture and constriction. Instead, it is what keeps me walking when I am overcome by the amount of work that needs to be done; especially in me.

Looks are deceiving.  Thistles have flowers that are gorgeous.  Yokes are made of wood and look uncomfortable.   In the end, the star of a thistle is a poison dart; and the yoke is where I find my rest.

 "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. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light". Matthew 11:30