We fell to the ground, and I heard a voice saying to me in Aramaic, “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.” Acts 26:14
A goad was a sharp stick they used to herd and guide animals, especially beasts of burden like oxen. If the animal rebelled and kicked, they would only hurt themselves. Why? When yoked, it was hard for them to see the road ahead and the obstacles in the path. Their vision was limited and their mind on their loads. The goading was a gentle prod to steer them down the right path, to the next water hole or place of rest, or around the next obstacle in the road.
Sound familiar? It does to me. When I am yoked with all my worries and agenda, it limits my vision. I cannot see what lies ahead, only what is at my feet. My mind is on carrying the load. I plod along, and if by some chance my Master prods me to change directions for my own good, I kick. “Leave me alone- I am in my zone- I am getting used to carrying all of this you have given me to carry, Lord. It’s my lot in life to be burdened. ”
Yet God’s promise is to never give us more than we can bear. That does not mean we don’t pile it on ourselves. Is your mind on the load or the Master walking beside you? He is watching out for you. He know which direction you are going and the obstacles in the path. Even if you think you are doing His will and carrying the burdens He has given you to carry, as Paul did, if you ignore His goading, you may just head down the wrong road. Life is a journey that does not need to be burdensome. Not when you let Jesus help you.
Heavenly Father, Your promise is to never give us more than we can bear. Keep me today from taking on more than I can handle and guide my steps, my thoughts and my actions. Let me not rebel against Your prodding, but realize that You are goading me on to better things. Let me put my trust in You. This journey down my life is better when You are by my side. Amen.
“Come unto me, all of 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 light.” Matthew 11:28-30