Yoked to Jesus

“Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, 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 light.” †  Mathew 11: 28-30  What is the labour and burden that Jesus is asking me to deal with? Perhaps I have to let go of the compulsive burden (or is it a sort of entitlement?) that my spouse and children should choose a spiritual path that I know to be right. Jesus accompanied Judas Iscariot to the very end but never deprived him of his freedom to choose his own destiny. Jesus on the other hand, uninterrupted by Judas's choice to reject him, continues to accomplish his mission. He does become a victim of Judas's betrayal but he seldom takes on the victim's identity. In divine wisdom, Jesus chooses to die in our place (and that of Judas) in a redeeming act of love. Rather than being compelled to fix those whom God has entrusted to my headship by m

The change we all desire

All of us, at some point in our lives, negate a strong inclination from within to change. To change the way we behave in specific situations. This includes how we react to certain situations, questionable ways we operate to fulfill some of our unspecific desires, Certain passions at work in us that give rise to actions that we are not truly comfortable with etc.

This desire to change is a positive drive and a default mechanism within man that operates as result of our original goodness. All of us are inherently good. At the same time we are also the result of the situations we have gone through, our circumstances, certain traits that is passed down to us from our parents and grandparents. The usual tendency is to live with these anomalies and get used to it so much that we fail to differentiate what is innate from what is acquired.

All of us, at any point of time can change. The process of change begins with an awareness that I need to change. The challenge is to take this awareness further by resisting the temptation to compromise. The process that helps in this refinement is called reflection. Though sounds simple, it is a path breaking exercise. It is a process by which we analyze and understand the pattern that is at work in us and process this understanding and execute the change in our attitude and actions. It is a daily process for someone who wants to grow in maturity and make a difference in the world, unavoidable if we need to leave a legacy behind.

Change is a painful yet fruitful process. This process could also be understood as: Death – Resurrection – New life. One needs to die to his ego and pride to facilitate change. It is like the grain of wheat that falls on the ground and dies to bring forth a new plant. Change precedes pain but proceeds to everlasting Joy.

To facilitate a fruitful reflection, we need to have a reference point. We determine an action or thought to be good or bad by comparing it to a higher value. This higher value is the reference point I’m referring to. A reflection with out higher value reference point will be mere thinking about the past.

Jesus offers this moral reference point for us. Jesus said I’m the Truth. He also said you shall know the truth and the truth will set you free.

God not only gives us a higher moral reference point but also the grace to change. The grace is a free gift. It is in other words God’s helping hand to execute change. Grace is available to all freely and the only criterion is that we should be human. This is because all of us are God’s children.

The reflection is a daily process. The keywords to remember are: Daily quiet time - juxtapose thoughts, attitudes and actions to a higher moral reference point – identify areas to change – translate decisions to actions - Depend not on our ability but on God's grace - Resist the temptation to revert to mediocrity - Seek to improve despite failure – finally change for better and know there is room to change still.


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