Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? -Jesus, Matthew 11:28
You live lives full of effort and fatigue, accomplishment and failure. You’re in competition with the sun trying to save up enough days to rest, but we always have to cash in too soon. You’re in competition with physics trying to make a more significant mark on this earth, but we still end up as the same carbon stain that we were destined to become. You fight against evil within yourselves by learning the best religious method and still are unable to bridge the abyss between who you are and who you’re supposed to be.
Come to me… I’ll show you how to take a real rest. -Jesus, Matthew 11:28
You want to be disciples and lead armies of lost souls to Jesus. You stand against sin like a fortress and fight endlessly to uphold the law. You gather names in the crook of your arm and slash the fallen with a slanderous tongue. You’re immovable, you’re stubborn, you’re relentless. Yet, you still leave a path of destruction.
Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. -Jesus, Matthew 11:29
We can’t lose sight of Who we’re following while we’re trying to lead. A little dose of humility and splash of humanity to make you remember your skin would do you good. Somebody will leave the spill in the aisle and somebody else will forget to put up the caution sign. You think you know where you’re going. You think you know the way, you think you know the truth, you want to show off your life.
A disciple is not a leader, he’s a follower. You’re walking backward because you do not think you need to look forward. You’ve lost your Way because you do not know the Truth and have yet to live real Life. Failure is not the adversary, it’s the red carpet to grace. Maybe, we fall so that we remember to stop looking at what our hands are doing or who our arms are holding and look to the One we’re supposed to be following.
“I am the way and the truth and the life.” -Jesus, John 14:6 NIV
Do you want to know how to do it right?
‘Simply put, if you’re not willing to take what is dearest to you, whether plans or people, and kiss it good-bye, you can’t be my disciple.‘ -Jesus, Luke 14:33
He says, ‘Watch how I do it…’
“Anyone who intends to come with me has to let me lead. You’re not in the driver’s seat; I am. Don’t run from suffering; embrace it.” Jesus, Matthew 16:24
Listen to what they’re saying about Him. Are you afraid of being like Jesus? Are you afraid that somebody might say these things about you?
“What is he doing eating and drinking with crooks and ‘sinners’?” -Luke 5:30
“He takes in sinners and eats meals with them, treating them like old friends.” -Luke 15:2
He didn’t come to reject the world. He came to save it.
Our lives are an echo of His. We chase His shadow and root out His footprints. We smell His shirts and bury our face in His pillow. If you want to be with Him, you have to drop everything and follow Him. The immovable have to release their anchor, the stubborn have to be submissive, the relentless have to become merciful. This is how you can end your path of destruction…
“Learn the unforced rhythms of grace.” -Jesus, Matthew 11:29
Jesus touched the unclean, entertained the sexually charged and toppled religious stilts. He ate with short, sweaty, opportunists and drank with dirty, blue collar, salty tongued average. He didn’t back down, He didn’t give up and He never got distracted. When Jesus gets stripped down to take the prophetic scripture’s brunt, He does it completely alone.
They take Jesus away, but you can see Him through the crowd. He braces for his cross and it settles in for fate’s walk. The air is a mixed drink of fear and anticipation. There’s something about the high profile execution that has the demons in humanity clicking their heels in rhythmic time. You’re relieved He’s reached His destiny, but knowing the same makes you tremble in fear.
Being ‘crucified’ with Christ is easier said than done, but talk is cheap and faith is in the movement, not in the sentiment.
Jesus winces a groan and His tears are not shy. Just because He knew this was coming, does not make it any less real. Even as the circumstance snuffs away His life, He cannot abandon His heart and forget about you standing there in your trembles. He shifts the weight of the cross and spits the blood from His mouth. He looks you dead in the eye and whispers through space and time…
“Follow me and I’ll show you how.” -Jesus, Mark 8:34