Without A Whip
Written by Robert Truesdale   
Friday, 27 September 2013 11:43

                                                                                WITHOUT A WHIP


     I was watching a horse race the other day when I heard the strangest thing. The announcer made the following statement, “In the next race, the jockey on the number eight horse rides without a whip.” I used to be a big fan of horse racing and even owned a few over the years. I guess growing up twenty minutes from famed Saratoga Racetrack played a part in that. In 30 years of watching races I never heard that statement. I found it peculiar. The only thing I could come up with was the horse didn’t care for the whip and reacted adversely to it in the past, so why upset the apple cart? At least if the audience was informed they wouldn’t be screaming at the jockey to use his whip in the home stretch. Often times a horse will jump, alter course or just give up if they are whipped. Can’t say I blame them! I went on my way and didn’t give it another thought, until the next day.

     The next morning the Lord spoke. “He didn’t need the whip because the horse knew what he was supposed to do.” Wow!  I began thinking about this horse and rider and the continuity between them. They used to call this ‘flow’. The skilled rider would put the horse into contention at the right point in the race and tug the reins to tell him when to kick on home. The horse, doing what he was created by God to do (run fast!), felt the tug on the reins and knew it was time to find another gear. As I thought about this horse and rider working so cooperatively together, I realized what God really wants from my life.

     The Bible talks about our ‘walk’ with God. It’s another way of describing the day by day, minute by minute relationship He wants to have with us. When He says things like, “Pray without ceasing,”(1 Thess. 5:17) He’s not saying the Christian life is about interceding twenty four hours a day. He’s saying that as a loving Father, He wants to have an ongoing conversation with us all day long. He wants to hear from us. He wants to talk to us. He wants it to be a dialogue for the rest of our lives. Sometimes it’s praising Him. Sometimes it’s praying for the needs of others. Sometimes it’s using the Word to overcome temptation or for strength through trials. Sometimes it’s simply being still and acknowledging Him for all He is.  And sometimes all we can pray is tears. Jesus said, “There is a friend who sticks closer than a brother,”(Prov.18:24) and He wants to hear it all; the good, the bad and the ugly. Besides, He knows it all already, even before we think it! A verse I memorized several years ago says, “Walk by the Spirit and you will not carry out the desires of the flesh.” I was a prisoner to the desires of my flesh for many years. In time, God showed me that freedom came from walking closely with Him and in truth. I desire to have more ‘flow’ in my walk with God. In these last five years of wilderness walking, I’ve come to know Him more as Abba Father as opposed to an angry, busy, punishing God. He had to grow me in my understanding of who He really is and what He wants from my life. What He wants for me and you fits us like a glove! It was the ‘me’ He created me to be and the abundant life Jesus died to give each one of us. In short, eternal life-right now! Not just when we die, but every day and moment by moment. He wants you and me to breathe him in the spring air, see Him in the splendor of a sunset, taste him in the scrumptiousness of your favorite dessert, feel him in the touch of your beloved spouse, and delight in Him in the innocent giggle of a child. He is abundant life! “In Him was life and the life was the light of men.”(John 1:4) Jesus Christ came to bring life and healing to our darkened world; to wash our sin and shame, to heal the broken relationships, to give us real hope! He came to make us new. He came to make us whole, He came to make us right with the Father.

     Perfect love doesn’t need a whip. The Bible says, “In this is love, God gave His only begotten Son into the world that we might live through Him.” (1 John 4:9)  He didn’t send Jesus to give us a bunch of rules. Jesus fulfilled all God’s rules! He sent His Son to redeem us from the curse of not being able to keep the rules! He came to live in us and work His desires in our hearts and lives. He came to show us Abba Father. He came to give us life, both eternal and abundant! He wants such an intimate relationship with you and me that all He has to do is tug on the reins (still small voice) and we respond. Whether it’s sharing your faith at a particular time, fleeing temptation, giving love when you’re getting dumped on, forgiving someone who’s just not worthy, or just taking one more step when everything inside says, “QUIT!”. He already knows what we need. He is all we need! I cannot do this thing called ‘life on earth’ without Him.  I need Him every breath, and the more I walk with Him and talk with Him and follow, the more intimate our relationship becomes. Broken relationships become mended. Broken dreams are reborn. Broken hearts find healing. Broken promises find forgiveness. And broken lives are put back together in His image and for His glory. The stretch run is right in front of you. Perfect Love is gently tugging on the reins. Go ahead, run for all you’re worth!