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

Faith is not knowledge!

Faith is not the human act of merely consenting to theological knowldge but it is the divine act of submitting both our Intellect and Will to God's revelation. If the Intellect alone is employed, knowledge remains simply as true and good life-giving information. It does not transform our life nor does it give life. Faith without action is dead. Jam 2:26

Will is the faculty of the soul which seeks to love that which is known. And 'loving' is not simply liking the information but the act of becoming what we have come to know. In other words loving is to freely act upon the information in such a way that knowledge becomes a living experience. If I come to know that in order to sustain my life I must drink water and if I do not act on this information and drink water, this knowledge does not do me any good.  In order for my faith to be active and alive, my Will has to be in harmony with the Intellect. It also means both my Intellect and Will should be surrendered to God. The discord or the disharmony between the Intellect and Will is aftermath of the rapture that took place in the human soul at the fall of humanity. It is the consequence of original sin. Though the Will knows the information to be true and life-giving it is too weak to disestablish its preoccupation with the disordered selfish desires of the flesh. This is when we experience what St. Paul says in Rom 7:15 "I do not do what I intend to do but do the very things I hate to do".

Man is created by God modelled after His own life - the life-giving life bubbling among the three persons in God. Thats why, in the human soul there is Intellect and Will as there is God the Father and God the Son in the Trinity. The agreement between the Father and the Son or the harmony between them is the third person, the Holy Spirit. If there is discord and disharmony within our soul, the Holy Spirit has a role to repair and heal this rupture. And thus faith is a theological virtue. 

Faith is a gift of God. Jesus's death and resurrection paved the way for the Holy Spirit to enter our brokenness, heal and restore it. Our faith in  Jesus heals and restores us and makes us sharers of divine life. Jesus tells St. Paul, in response to the helpless cry of the heart, "All you need is my grace". Grace is God's presence, it is the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit. Grace perfects human nature. Our fallen nature will be perfected by divine grace. It will do so by enlightening the dull Intellect and strengthening the weak Will to expose itself in humble submission to God's love and respond as Mary did. A fortified Will will overcome the ungodly compulsions and the habituations of the flesh. It will purify the fleshly desires directing itself to life-giving love of God truly quenching it hunger and thirst for satisfaction and fulfilment. For God is the fulfilment of all desires. So as Jesus declares "believe in God and and believing in me (Jesus) whom God has sent" - John 6:29.  Faith is obeying and living Jesus's life-giving commandments.

Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash


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