A Recipe To Rest

June 9, 2015

“Come to Me, all you 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)

Jesus loves to give invitations.  He addresses this one to people who are loaded with problems and working themselves to exhaustion trying to solve them.  Jesus promises that if we come to Him He will give us rest.  If you look closely at this invitation, He is inviting us to come to Him and learn about His heart, His burden and His yoke.  What we learn there will lead us to this rest.

Jesus wants burdened people to learn that His burden is light, His heart is humble and His yoke is easy.  There is a sense in which Jesus had the weight of the world on His shoulders and yet He claimed that His burden was light.  His burden was light because He let the Father carry the load.

The most important part of His recipe for rest is what Jesus wants us to learn about His yoke.  A yoke is not a burden — it’s an instrument that makes it possible to bear a burden.  When a cart is piled high with cargo the yoke makes it possible for an ox to pull a great load with ease.  It is the yoke of Jesus that shows us how to pull our heavy burdens of life.

The yoke of Jesus was that He let His Father carry the burdens.  We take His yoke upon us when we let the Holy Spirit carry the load.

Dick Woodward, 05 November 2013


Let Go and Let God

January 11, 2013

“… but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. ” (Philippians 3: 13, 14)

As we move into a new year so many of us could say, “These forty/eleven things I dabble in” as we consider our priorities.  Spiritual heavyweights like Paul can write “One thing I do.” They can write that they have their priorities sifted down to one thing because they forget those things that are behind.

We all have things we need to let go of so we can press toward the goal of what God wants us to do now and in the future.

The story is told of a man who fell over a cliff but managed to grab hold of a little bush that was growing out of the cliff about forty feet from the top.  He frantically shouted “Help!” several times but his voice simply echoed back to him.  Desperately he yelled, “Anybody up there?  A subterranean voice answered, “Yes!” He then yelled again “Help!” Then the voice said. “Let go!” After a brief pause the man shouted, “Anybody else up there?”

Sometimes it takes a lot of faith to let go.  It may be that we need to let go of things that we cannot do and only God can do.  It may be we need to let go of things we cannot control.  And, sometimes we need to let go of hurts that people have inflicted on us and we cannot forgive them and just let it go.

Do you need to let go and let God so you can unload baggage and move forward with God?


A Prescription for Greatness

October 16, 2012

“He must increase, but I must decrease.”  (John 3:30)

Who was the greatest prophet who ever lived?  Who was the greatest man who ever lived?  According to Jesus the answer is John the Baptist (Luke 7:28; Matthew 11:11).  Having studied the Scripture for six decades I find that answer to be intriguing because very little space is given in the Bible to record this man’s life and ministry.

As I meditate on the Scriptures that describe him I have come to a conclusion about his greatness.  At least one key to his greatness was that he accepted the limits of his limitations and the responsibility for his ability.

As we attempt to discover who we are and what God wants to do through our life it is a good rule of thumb to accept the limits of our limitations and the responsibility for our ability.  When a degenerative disease of the spinal cord took away my physical abilities, it was critical for me to accept my increasing limitations and continue to be responsible for my abilities.

After about two years of illness when the acceptance came, it was so profound I decided it was a form of inner healing.  Using speech recognition software on my computer I received the grace to write about ten thousand pages of what I call a Mini Bible College.  These 782 studies of the Bible have been translated into twenty eight languages in sixty countries.

It fills me with grateful worship to realize that the formula for greatness I have learned from John the Baptist has guided me to the most important work I have done for God and Christ.

Are you willing to accept the limits of your limitations and the responsibility for your ability?