The Inside Track
Are you ever fascinated when you see a photo of a horse
that has just won a big barrel race and in the action photo his eyes are
bugged and his mouth is wide open? When you study the photo, his head is
tied down with something over the ears and the nose. The rider is
pulling very hard on the mouth, so the jaw and neck of the horse look stiff
and unyielding. He is winning, but he is running and turning mostly from
outside aides and forces.
On the other hand, you see photos to marvel at where the
horse is winning and he looks the opposite. His attention is on the
barrel, the eyes are soft, the mouth closed, the neck and jaw are yielded and
the rider has very little pressure on the reins. This horse is winning
because he craves to run and turn. This horse is winning from the inside
The two scenarios above have just described the difference
in Religion and Christianity. The point of this devotion is that
religion is like the tie-down and the traps put upon horses to force them to
turn. Religion is designed to motivate from without. Religion is a
set of rules and regulations trapping people into lifestyles of trying to be
good enough to please God or to make it into Heaven. People who are
religious can be very un-Christ like. Jesus said so himself. He
hated religion and constantly came against those who acted religious. He
told us in Matthew 23:3 not to follow their example. To get a good
picture of the religious, read all of Matthew 23 this week.
It talks about people who pray to be seen and heard and follow
rules for show. They look good on the outside, but within their
hearts, they are full of things that are not pleasing to God. Jesus
Christ said woe to these religious folks!
When we ask Christ into our hearts to live through us, he
lights us from within. We become like that great horse who is working
because he is lit from within with desire to perform and to be obedient to his
rider. Jesus lights us from within and cleans out the inside of the cup
Then, as we learn to listen to His leading from within, and
begin to be obedient to the things He has for us to do in our world, our lives
become transformed. People who are around us do not see us as "religious"
but hopefully as someone they would come to in time of need.
Jesus Christ came to show us the way to life abundant.
He did not come to apply a brow bonnet or a tie-down to our nose and force us
into a set of rules. He came to liberate us from religion and give us a
free rein to follow Him. It is in our obedience to Him that we truly
become introduced to life abundant.
Religion tries to train us from the outside in.
Jesus Christ lights us within and gives us opportunities to become new from
the inside out! We are a most blessed generation!