“You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.” Isaiah 26:3
We are called to know and obey the commands of our Lord Jesus. He is truly our Master and we are truly His servants. Yet, He would not have us live only as servants or only according to commands. His goal for us is that we become His friends who know His business (see John 15:15). He also intends for us to mature to the point that we do not need to have a command in order to do what is best because we have come to embrace the Kingdom vision He has brought to us.
One of the most powerful changes that has occurred in my own mind as a disciple has been the shift in focus from commands to vision. What I mean is that I used to be primarily concerned with what was allowed and forbidden, being careful to avoid the forbidden and going as close to the line as possible without crossing it. This is a necessary step for most of us as we mature, and the rules are a blessing in that step. Eventually, though, I had to reach a point of maturity in which I understood that the rules are just an expression of the greater vision of life God intends for His people. Putting those rules and commands together, I was seeing a breathtakingly beautiful image emerge of what life can and should be for all God’s children.
I urge you, Disciple, to see your Master’s commands as more than stern orders issued by a superior with an ever-present “or else” hanging overhead. He does command and there are severe consequences for disobeying, but there is so much more for us here. As you grow and mature, see your Master’s commands against anxiety and worry as invitations to the fuller life that is available to you. Rather than trying not to worry, devote your energies to embracing the alternative: a life of confident trust in the God who loves you enough to give the life of His own Son to reconcile you to Himself. Embrace the life which is rooted in the One who slept through a squall on the open waters, calmly faced a legion of demons, spoke authoritatively to the dead to call them to life, and boldly faced the suffering and death that He knew awaited Him beyond Gethsemane. How could anyone live such a life? He could live that kind of life in this trouble-saturated world because He saw so clearly the Father-saturated Kingdom to which He belonged. You belong to that Kingdom, too, Disciple, even as you “travel this sod”, and His commands are pregnant with the promise that you can live as He did in His mortal flesh.
What has happened to you is behind you and need not hold any power over you anymore. What is happening to you is not greater than the One who is with you, and He will not abandon you as you face it. What may happen to you in the future is not for you to be concerned about. Tomorrow’s not promised you, so why borrow its problems? As our Master said, doesn’t today have enough concerns of its own? Past, present, or future – bring your concerns confidently to the feet of the One who was, and is, and is to come (Revelation 4:8)!
Learning to recognize and accept His invitations to the full life with you,