I Will Give You Rest

Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, 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 is light.”

I’ve heard it countless times, this passage, and for some reason its knocking at my heart tonight. Knocking, beckoning, there’s a tug. “I will give you rest”.  Jesus said that and either its the absolute truth or else He’s a liar. No in between the way I figure it. I get excited reading the Gospels over and over because every time is a brand new experience! And as time marches on its tugging at me more and more, the hope for the outcasts.

Now, the more and more a person reads the Gospels with an open heart the more and more the ways of Jesus penetrate right into a person. And a thing that bothers me much of the time is how this walk with the modern day church many times throws the simplicity of the Gospel right out the window into the garbage dumpster out back. I’m sorry, but its true. Many times just attending church can be a huge drag down to a person. I don’t know when I wrote it but I know I’ve written it a few times in the past and that is where I wrote the Charismatic church, while figuring they’re all right on track, always saying they ain’t religious, saying they hate religion, are basically one of the most religious branches of Christianity that there is.

Through the years writing I’ve had many, many people e-mail me with problems but there’s a few that stand out in my memory. One was from a lady in New England. She was going to a Charismatic church, a very popular one, where they pride themselves in not being religious. But sadly to say, they were just as religious as the Pharisees in the days of Jesus. Maybe even more so, it’s just disguised from many people who aren’t aware of it. Seems like the pastor there put such a heavy emphasis on speaking in tongues that if a person didn’t they were labeled pretty low in the church. The letter I got back then was from a person that was totally devastated because of how she was made to feel by these supposedly Spirit filled Christians. She had to quit the church, and couldn’t even bring herself to finding a real Christian church. And I truly do mean it, this statement! I overlook many things with many churches. I am not one to judge but every once in a while it just swells up inside of me and I get a rage. I ask God is this just me or is there really something wrong with it all.

As far as I know I probably failed with my answer back then to that lady. I never really heard from her again. But through the last few years this bothered me, bothered me allot. And as the years have gone by I’ve studied, prayed and researched this all from every angle I could possibly do. And I’ve come to the conclusion, wait, let me inject something here that happened this past summer while I was talking to a “rural outcast”! As I was talking to the fella, talking farming and faith, something slipped out of my mouth during the conversation that was out of my control. No, it wasn’t in tongues, it was in cattlemen’s language. I said bluntly as I was witnessing to him, “there’s more people going to hell because of the churches than the other way around”. Now that should give me high marks from allot of people, more like tar and feathers! But I tell you that its true, sadly. And I ain’t church bashing here either.

I read the Gospels, and I go to church. When I read the Gospels, it all makes sense. When I’m involved in church stuff a person almost has the gospels taken out of it. You know, a person sits in church and its very rare anyone new comes in, very rare. And if they do that’ll more than likely be the last time a person will see em. That is of course if they are from the world. Most folks that drop into churches are from other churches and ain’t satisfied and they sometimes like to see how green the grass is on the other side of the fence. I call em, professional Protestants. I really call em that, called em that for years. And if they can work their way in and become popular they’ll stick around for a while. Usually they want top billing and are satisfied for a while being the center of attention. Let’s just say its in a Charismatic church, well you can bet your bottom dollar that if’n they never spoke in tongues before they will be right quick because they’re going to look good no matter what!

Allot of churches that ramrod tongue talking, (instead of letting the Holy Spirit move and have real tongue talking), keep talking, “its the evidence of being baptized in the Holy Spirit”. Back a couple years ago when I took Bible College there was one huge thing that they taught over there at World Harvest Bible College and that was about the evidence of tongues. Now, let me say right here I believe in tongues cause the Bible says so and I ain’t listening to no body but the Word.  The thing that sticks in my memory, and I love this, is that a person can be found guilty even with evidence supporting them! Heck, I’d bet most folks going to trial have some evidence in their favor but many, many are found guilty! Evidence is nice, yes it is, but evidence can be untrue also. Yes it can. What is needed is “PROOF!” Proof without a doubt!

I just love this! I really do! Proof that a person has the love of God in em! Proof that they love the Lord more than the world and themselves! Proof! Proof that they ain’t burdened by the world!Proof that they can’t contain the Good News in themselves and they just have to share it instead of thinking church is where its at! I tell you,I can really get going on this because the ugly fangs of religion show themselves so often in churches that it makes me wonder about the verses I put on top of the page. I get a rage deep down in my gut when I see people being forced into religion. The Gospel says, “I will give you rest!” The Gospel says “For My yoke is easy and My burden is light!” And I think back to that lady who wrote me and I have incredible sorrow because of how she was smashed down by religion! Life is bad enough in the world without churches adding to it! Amen?

Jesus Christ suffered and shed His Blood for all of us, not just some of us. I don’t believe that He wants a complicated, hard to reach life for any of us. Whatever happened to joy in the Lord? I hate complication! When Jesus walked this earth He had compassion, not rules! He broke durn near all the rules and the Pharisees were foaming at the mouth. And most importantly, He said following Him was easy! Easy! I will testify that it is, when you break away from the rotting manure pile of religion and just love the Lord, simply!

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6 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Morning Sir,

    Just to let you know I’m still alive. This ol so called economic downturn has took a little toll here and I’m having to go a few more miles to work now… I haven’t forgot about you ol friend 🙂

    The other thing is I can’t keep up with your prolific (now there’s a $10 word 🙂 ) writing. I figure you ought to just publish it and I could read it by the bedside then. What do ya think???

    In the meantime… I’ve got to stop chasing wayward calves and I’m gathering the brood together for the sale barn. Looks like those cattle prices are way low this year. Its just a good year for replacing and eating em it looks like 🙂

    Alright, I’ve gotta go…. Tomorrow looks like it might slow down a little. Maybe I canget in here and enjoy myself a little….

    Have a GREAT day,

    Brad

  2. Morning Brad!

    Weaned calves yesterday so a couple more noisy days around here! Good lookin bunch to, now for the prices to firm up by mid winter!

    Gotta put up some electric fence today and get around fifty of those cows across the county road to lush pastures! Don’t look like it hardly rained last night so that’s a plus.

    Lots of stuff to cover around this blog. Last night’s went off course a little but it’ll be back on course shortly. Prolific writing only means that there’s allot of mud out there and its really dark outside 🙂

    God Bless!

  3. Hi Tom!

    Been a while since I commented, but I’ve been reading. Keep up the good work!

    Anyway, for those who read this post and wonder what true religion is, they just have to go to their Bibles and see: “True religion is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.”

    If we (Christians) put the energy into this that we put into judging others (which is also addressed in James), then we’d see some great things happen.

    The book of James is loaded with practical information for living – it’s a treasure trove.

    Matt

    • Hey Matt!

      Yup, its been a while and I had thought I’d lost you!! This does make my day!

      I used that verse a few weeks ago on a video that I made for our church, it was about the Honduran trip this past summer. I always like putting in something from James cause it causes discomfort in many folks. Years ago I was told by some Christians to stay away from the book of James cause it was about works. Well, when I’m told to stay away from something by people whom I ain’t all that impressed in I go to the book like a fly to….uh…manure 🙂 And what I found was a treasure!

      Again, I’m glad your around!!

      God Bless!

  4. Loved your post. I pastored for many years and finally decided that church today is the offspring of religion, not something Jesus started. Most of what’s done in most institutional churches doesn’t need the help of the Holy Spirit. Jesus told his disciples that no one should excercize authority over another like the Greeks or take positions and use titles like the Jews. He said we were all brothers, and that the older shoud serve the younger. The church was to be a community of people who served one another in love and loved their neighbors into the kingdom. That happens all week long, not in a building. When they got together they dialogued according to the original language. They didn’t listen to a lecture while staring at the back of someone’s head. Wouldn’t it be great if we learned to be the church rather than attent an event in a building? Then we could live the bottom line and leave the petty doctrinal issues to those with nothing better to do.

    • Thanks David,

      I’ve been saying that for a long time, that the church today is the offspring of religion. Or to put it another way, the offspring of centuries of traditions of man. One of the best books I’ve ever read about that is TL Osborn’s “Soulwinning”. Where he shows how the early church operated, or should I say the Biblical church, and its a whole lot different than what we’re with today for the most part.

      In my humble opinion, the church, which is the born again believer, is to operate outside of the walls. Today I was building fence in the meadows and I always have my pocket Bible in my front pocket of my Wrangler denim shirt and I opened up to Acts chapter 1

      “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

      Hmm, I gotta write about this soon!

      Thanks and God Bless!


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