Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me-watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythm of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly. -Matthew 11:28-30 (msg)
I grew up hearing the New International Version that states, “For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” I misconstrued this to mean that with Jesus nothing should ever go wrong. Even as a child I had addict tendencies, the ‘all or nothing’ mentality. When something bad happened, my dad leaving us or friends talking behind my back, I would hear this scripture and think to myself, “Well, God must not be for me, he must be against me, cause this ain’t easy or light.” The extremist personality I grew up with pushed me further and further from God and His grace was neither accepted or even noticed by me.
The message version is much easier for an extremist like me to grasp. To get away with Jesus could mean a variety of options. I am someone who needs time alone to be recharged. A walk with my dog and nothing else, not even headphones, an afternoon cleaning while listening to a sermon, these things give me rest. Getting in the habit of resting in Jesus truly does allow us to recover our lives, even when we didn’t ever know we had lost them. I honestly don’t know if I ever had my full life before I found salvation in Jesus. I had thirty years of wasted potential. A lot of dreams, a lot of almosts resulting to nothing really achieved. Addiction wastes a lot of time.
No matter where we came from or what we have done, there is much hope. This passage says our job is to walk, work and watch. Walk a life with Jesus, pay attention to the blessings, work not for the sake of achieving salvation but in celebration of the salvation already granted you. Good things are already upon you, and you can accept the potential within you.
What potential does God want to wake in you?