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How is that big hill you're climbing?

How tough is that big hill you're climbing?

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 11:29-30 (NKJV)

I was talking with a friend about a devotional series that we had just went through titled, "A Servants Heart."  After looking over one of the parts of the series, they commented, "Being a follower of Christ is not for sissy's.  I got a big hill to climb."

I responded by saying that, "According to 'God' He does the climbing--we just have to agree to go in that direction."

And that is precisely what Jesus tells us in Matthew 11:29-30.  He tells us to "take my yoke upon you," and that we will find rest for our souls.  Our problem (pun intended) is that we take on these problems that occur in our life (which are usually partly if not mostly our fault), and the problems of others as well, and we make them part of our "yoke" or burden to carry, to fix, and to deal with--God never intended this.

The fact of the matter is that my friend knew this Truth very well, and yet there were feelings that still manifested themselves into the struggling image of having a big hill to climb, to be able to do what God would want them to do in various situations.

Q:    Why is that?
A:    I believe that it was because they thought about what Jesus would do, and examined their own response and realized that the two ways were not in synchronicity--maybe even far apart.

But I'm equally sure that if we all looked at our own lives in comparison to Christ's, we could easily derive that we have a serious long way to become perfect imitators of Christ.

God knows this, and that is why He gave us a helper (The Holy Spirit) to empower us so we can achieve what He has asked of us.  I know this; God hasn't asked any of us to walk on water, and He knows that we will fail from time to time--but He isn't going to let us just sit around and get by on saying, "Oh well, I'm not perfect ya know."  He will continue to change us little by little each and every day.

In fact, God promises us that He is going to transform us (See how in Rom 12:1-2) into the image of His Son, and that He will never stop until the day we see Jesus face to face.

being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ; Philippians 1:6 (NKJV)

Q:    So why do we get so dejected when we see our failures?
Q:    Why do we look at the transformation process of becoming like Jesus like some behemoth hill that we are challenged, or forced to climb alone?

A:    Because we believe the lies that the enemy has put into our minds.

These lies are very tricky and very close to being truth--but they are misleading and just as destructive as any lie out there.

Example of partial Truth-lie from the enemy:   "I'll never get it right!  It is too hard to live like Christ."

The first thing we need to realize here is that we can "Get it right," but it isn't going to be by our own strength.  We need God's power to do these things.  When we believe the subtle lie of the enemy into thinking that we are the ones that have to do it on our own, we will become overwhelmed.  If we continue to do things in our own strength and in our own human reasoning, we will be doomed to fail repeatedly.  

Satan knows this and so he continually tempts us to look at how the world is doing things to justify our actions.  He then comes around and attempts to condemn us for the very things that he just tempted us to do.  He does this as part of his, "Kill, steal, and destroy" plan that he is attempting to use on every persons life.

Q:    So what can we do to detect Satan's lies, and to stay grounded in the Lord?

A:    First, we have to take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ--When it come into your mind, line it up with God's Word, and see if it is something that He would want you to think upon.  If not, get rid of it and don't think on it (See 2Cor 10:3-5).

Second, stay reading the Word of God "DAILY."  It is through God's Word that we can sift out and determine full and partial lies from the enemy.  It is through His Word that God communicates to us, as we prayerfully read and meditate upon it to see how it applies to our life or particular situation.

All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work. 2Timothy 3:16-17 (NKJV)

Hey Christian, walking up the "Big hill" isn't so tough when you realize that you don't have to do it in your own strength, and that God is going to lead and empower you in every step, showing you the way.  All you need to do is just be willing to walk in the direction that God is leading you.

STUDY QUESTION: What can we learn about God's helping us by the Scriptures in this Devotional?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Are you taking God's yoke, which is light, or are you adding to your burdens by attempting to do things alone?

APPLICATION: Start talking with God daily.  Tell Him your fears, and concerns--give them to Him and let Him handle them in whatever way He wants.  Your part is to start to read His Word to find out how He wants to handle those situations now.

Father, Thank You for helping me with every detail in my life. I am sorry for the times that I have attempted to do things my way Lord.  I am sorry for the times where I have looked at my walk with You as a burden or a goal that I might not attain.  I confess that I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.  In Jesus precious name, amen...

Be Blessed, Pastor Scott

Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000