Yoked to Jesus

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“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

Interior Detachment

We are more keen to appear holy than to be holy. The prayers uttered are often a recounting of our own goodness. It becomes a mere hypocritical act to praise ourselves and to hail us better than others.

We are obsessively content with exterior display. We are content if we look good in the eyes of others. This is vanity, pride masquerading as humility. Our prayers do not pierce the clouds, instead destroys what is left of spirituality within us.

In the eastern tradition, during the lent, the monks would disperse themselves into the desert far from each other. The penance, self dedication, mortification etc that they do were only known to themselves and God. Even when they are back in the monastery, nobody asks what they did. This was done so that no one does anything in order to look good in the eyes of the other, but purely for the love for God.

True humility is unpretentious and is effortless. For the humble, his own sinful nature will always be a reality before him, even if he has command over them. He does not fail to acknowledge the mercy of God, that permits him to stand in His presence despite his unworthiness. For him to regard others greater than himself comes naturally without effort. He takes delight not in what others think of him but in walking in the ways of God. He does this despite condemnation and misrepresentation from others. He counts sacrifices as gain and beneficial. He is content within, and joy does not depart from him. His ways are well founded and he is sure footed. He is like refreshing water that quenches the internal ache. He is able to expose the folly of men and guide them to Truth.

All of us have a void within, that aches to search and unite with God. Spiritual poverty is detachment to exterior things that smother down and mutate this internal ache.  We ought to preserve our internal void from external infiltrations and free the soul to enter into a super natural union with God. The nothing within soon becomes everything.

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