The past few days I've been gliding in grace. It's be awesome. The scriptures fall into place when you view them through the lens of the New Covenant of grace.
I see that we have grace all backwards. We believe it is my commitment to Jesus so that He could forgive me. When in actuality, it is His commitment to me so that He could forgive me.
And so we see it is an insult to grace to dedicate my life to Jesus in order to get some acceptance or a badge or some form of approval. Each time we do this, we treat the precious Blood of the Covenant as an unholy thing. Because when you break it down and look at the reason behind your re-dedication, you see it is actually you trying to cover up your sins and mistakes by your good behavior and good deeds. You're playing a Wizard of Oz. Telling God to, "Pay no attention to my sin behind the curtain! Look at the flashy, magnificent show I have going on on the outside of it!"
If dedicating my life to Jesus worked, then why would I have need of re-dedicating? Why would God call me to fail at something over and over? Doesn't sound like Life abundant to me. It may look like Life, but it's only a mimicking of Life. And so you fail and burnout. Because man does not have Life within himself. If we want to act good, we need the Cause, not the effect. We need the root, not the fruit. Don't focus on the fruit, because it ain't your job. Which is why it doesn't say the fruit of the saint. It says the fruit of the Spirit. Try as you may to produce fruit, but you will just wither up.
Isn't it ironic people have used this verse to tell people that if they don't have fruit then they're not working hard enough or are not as sincere as those who work harder than the others? It speaks to the very people who struggle to produce fruit, rather than rest in the Vine.
Jesus told them He was the Vine. YOU are the branches. Quit trying to do the Vine's job. We are to bear fruit with PATIENCE. And so we STRIVE to enter that rest. Because, as Paul Anderson Walsh said once: "Everything in your mind will tell you, "I must not rest. I must work."