Between 2 Gardens
Between Two Gardens
A Beautiful Burden
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A Beautiful Burden

"Woe to them that are at ease in Zion." Amos 6:1
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There's nothing more tragic in the Church than indifference. I'd almost take heresy or unbelief over it. Like a Samson, the heart struggling to shake off sleep will be praised. (Jud. 16:20) Like a Martha, the soul that has struggled without finding it is to be pitied.

But what about the heart that never struggles at all? For them, the Spirit gives woe and warning, "Woe to them that are at ease in Zion." The Spirit puts it another way by the pen of John, if a man is not hot, he better be cold. (Rev. 3:15) Because tepid heart-water is good for nothing. It breeds microbes of sin, and selfish tumors.

I can understand a soul hearing the Gospel and believing;

I can understand a soul hearing the Gospel and doubting;

I can even understand a soul hearing and rejecting.

But what’s hard to imagine is hearing the Gospel and feeling nothing at all. At ease. Because the opposite of love is not hate. It's indifference. A careless state is ease.

It's like laughter at a funeral, dancing at a grave, or reveling in a time of war.

To be indifferent when the shadow of the cross passes by is to cram unbelief, presumption, and sloth, all into one dark heart. That's what it means to be at ease in Zion.

The believing heart knows that a Spirit-worked disquiet is a glory. That uneasiness can be a great blessing. The unbeliever looks in wonder at it and mocks to scorn.

But the believing soul knows he is not at ease simply because he is in Zion. In Zion, he knows that the shadow that darkens his path is the shadow of the cross. And he would rather walk with Christ in the shade than with the world in sunlight. He knows that God's floods also bring God's rainbows. That Christ's burdens make him lean on Christ. (Matt. 11:29) That Christ's grace is sufficient in weakness. (2 Cor. 12:9)

Then, dear one, will you not, with joy, take that yolk of Christ laying across your path to feel the blessedness of that burden Bearer? Will you reject that heavy stroke that falls only to those on whom Christ lays His hand? No, to lose ease is the price I pay for Zion. And it is a beautiful burden.

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Between 2 Gardens
Between Two Gardens
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Jerrold Lewis