Strive no more

I have been the king of striving. Striving is trying to do things (often good, God things) in my own way, in my own time, and in my own strength. God began a work in my life several months ago to break me of this.

I never imagined how thoroughly engrained striving was in my life and what a difference it would make to trust God instead. The freedom I’m experiencing as I break free from striving is remarkable. I am learning the truth of a passage of Scripture that is becoming a theme for me now:

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Matthew 11:28-30

Striving is tiring. It wears you out. It puts a strain on relationships. It is full of worry. Trusting God is the opposite of those things. For the longest time, I never believed Jesus that His yoke really is easy and His burden light. But now that I am exchanging my burden for the yoke of Jesus, I’m finding how true His words are. I wish I had never doubted.

In breaking free from striving, I had to make an ugly confession: Not only did I not trust God’s words, I didn’t think He had a big enough vision. I subconsciously believed for years that if I submitted myself fully to God, nothing much would happen in ministry. I thought the only way to see things really change and progress was to make it happen myself. I feel like a creep for saying that, but that’s what I believed. I have repented of that attitude and now wholeheartedly believe that God always has the very, very best at heart. The way to achieve God’s best is to fully submit to Him and abide in Him. “Remain in me, and I will remain in you…Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.” (John 15:4)

I’m finding it’s really fun to relax, figure out what God is doing, and see what part He wants me to play in it. I’m responsible to obey what He shows me to do; He’s responsible for the results. It’s freeing not carrying the burden of the results. It’s exciting to see God doing all sorts of things through me as I trust in Him.

Trusting fully in God is always the way to go.