February 22, 2006

Not My Will but Yours

Acts 26:9-18

"It is hard for you to kick against the goads." Acts 26:14


Saul was making a strange trip. He was heading away from Jerusalem, away from the temple, away from everything he loved. Why? He was on a search-and-destroy mission against the church of Christ. Then Saul met the one he thought was still back in Jerusalem. God showed up on the road--or, to be more specific, Christ showed up! He reminded Saul that you can no more fight the ascended Savior than an ox can fight the will of the farmer who guides the plow. "It is hard for you to kick against the goads," Jesus said to him. If you do, you succeed only in hurting yourself. We all face decisions about the direction our life should take. As a young man, I wrestled for years with whether to enter the ministry. My preference was to teach mathematics or explore the realm of physics. But God had other plans. Only when I stopped kicking against the goads and pursued the gospel ministry did I have peace. Where is God leading you? Maybe you know, but you are fighting his plans. Maybe God's intentions seem too hard, too difficult. But Jesus made a promise to Saul. And he makes that same promise to us. He reminds us that his burden is light (Matthew 11:29). Does that sound possible? You'll learn the truth of those words as you hear his voice and obey.

Lord, how stubborn we are! Help us submit to your hand at the reins of our lives. Bless us with the knowledge that your Spirit bears the burden of discipleship with us. Amen.

About the author — Bob Heerspink

Dr. Robert Heerspink was director of Back to God Ministries International from 2006 until 2011, when he passed away. He had previously pastored several Christian Reformed churches. Bob loved to write and was a frequent contributor to the Today devotional.

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