Main, Spiritual, Women, z154, z170
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The struggle to shine

For years, I struggled with an unbalanced view of the Christian faith.

In the Gospels, Jesus promised that when we took on His yoke, it would be easy and light:

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest . . . For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.

Matthew 11:29 – 30

There are many things that can make a yoke a burden such as too much weight. Sometimes it becomes lopsided and the burden is distributed unevenly and it starts to wear on one side causing painful, chafing sores.

I think many of us have an imbalanced view of the Gospel and because of that we have turned Jesus’ light yoke into a burden.

The message of the Gospel is that we are all sinners and that Christ came to take the punishment for our sin. This is an incredible message of hope.

But as important as this message is, if we only focus on this one aspect, it can cause an imbalance.

We need to balance the truth of our sinfulness with the message that we have tremendous value and importance to God.

In his article 13 signs you are humble, Bible teacher Kris Vallotton writes:

“You were born to be amazing – in the very image and greatness of God. We can’t steal something that was given to us. You can’t steal God’s glory because He gave it to you.”

Kris Vallotton, 13 signs you are humble

The Bible describes us as an amazing creation. According to Psalm 139:14, we are fearfully and wonderfully made, yet I rarely felt that way about myself.

The Bible says that God loves me unconditionally, but I couldn’t love myself. God totally accepts me just the way I am, but I couldn’t accept myself.

The Bible says because of Jesus, we became a friend of God (James 2:23). We are friends with those we like. God likes me. But I couldn’t be friends with me, because deep down I didn’t like myself.

Yes, I need to embrace the fact that I am a sinner needing a Savior, but I need to balance that with the Biblical message that I am also a wondrous creation.

By embracing how important we are to God and how much He values us corrects the unevenness of the yoke, God has so lovingly placed on our shoulders.

But more than that God has big plans for us. God wants to place His glory upon us. Jesus said:

“The glory which you have given Me, I have given to them, that they may be one, just as we are one.”

John 17:22

We are a reflection of God’s love and glory in the world today and to reflect that properly, we must love ourselves in the same way God loves us. We need to take care of our personal needs, mentally, emotionally and physically and the more we do this, the better we will be able to care of our families, friends, neighbors and people in need.

We need to embrace our value to God.

Isaiah prophesied:

“Arise, shine; for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you. For behold, darkness will cover the earth and deep darkness the peoples; But the Lord will rise upon you and His glory will appear upon you.”

Isaiah 60:1-3

And I say to you Arise and Shine! Shake off those feelings of self-hatred and rejection. Embrace God’s love for you. Embrace how much God values you.

And the glory that God is talking about will appear when we fully appreciate our worth in God’s eyes. And through this, God will draw people to himself. 

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