When You Are Tired

Life often demands that you keep going even when you are tired.

When you are burdened with grief, you still have to go to work.

When you are battling anxiety,  someone still has to do the dishes.

When you are restless to go but must stay right where you are.

“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”
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭11:28‬ ‭MSG‬‬

Jesus invites us to walk with Him, work with Him, and watch how He lives in the fullness of God’s love every day while bearing a great burden.

Your world may be dripping with unmet expectations, foundation-shaking experiences, and unbearable obligations.

Or it may be boring and frustrating with endless monotony.

Whatever is happening around you, Jesus wants to walk with you through it.

Lean on His strength and let Him love you right where you are.

Unlimited and Glorious

“I pray that from His glorious, unlimited resources He will empower you with inner strength through His Spirit.”Ephesians 3:16 NLT

God has glorious and unlimited resources for you today.

You have His strength to love, to walk, to work, to hold on to hope and let go of fear.

You have His grace to cover your mistakes and feed your compassion.

You have His joy to see the beauty of humanity that is all around you.

You have His kindness to be gentle with those who are closest to you.

You have His vision to see others as He does and love them with His love.

You are empowered to live loved as a child of God and do His will on earth as it is in heaven.

Not by your strength but by His.

Not from your limited resources, but from His unlimited and glorious resources.

Not so you will “look strong” on the outside but so that you will “be strong” on the inside.

You have so much more at your disposal than you realize.

You have Jesus and He brings all of heaven with Him.

Finished

When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.

John‬ ‭19‬:‭30‬ NIV

After the unfair trial.

After the man’s judgment.

After the sentence to death.

After the unbelievable physical pain.

After the unbearable separation from the Father.

After receiving horrific judgment and sin of the world upon Himself.

Before His final breath.

“It is finished.”

My sin paid for. 

My debt paid.

My forgiveness, offered.

My redemption, complete.

My relationship with God, possible.

Before you ever began, He finished it.

Overwhelmed with Sorrow

“Then Jesus went with his disciples to a place called Gethsemane…” 

Matthew 26:36

Jesus went to a garden on the lower slopes of the Mount of Olives, the place olives were crushed.

With the scent of olive oil heavy in the air, Jesus prayed.

Not with pretty words but with a soul overwhelmed with sorrow.

He cried out to His Father until blood drops appeared on His forehead.

On the way to Easter, we must stop at Gethsemane.

This is the place of honesty and truth.

Jesus held back nothing, He never did.

Jesus went there and so can you.

At some point, we all need Gethsemane. A place to plead with God for help and courage. A place to hold back nothing.

My friend, you don’t have to “hold back” your sorrow or worry from God. In fact, He is the only One who is able to fully receive it.

Sorrow is a part of life and Gethsemane is a safe place to pour out our grief, our anger, our hurt, our fear. It is also there we find the unlimited depths of God’s love for us.

Today, your Father in heaven opens His arms to you. He is able to handle it all.  

Jesus asked God if salvation for mankind could be purchased any other way than through the cross – there wasn’t.

So He went there – for you and for me.

Nothing, not even overwhelming sorrow, can separate you from God’s love.

The Lamb of God

And he took the bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me. In the same way, after supper, he took the cup saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you.” 

Luke 22:19-20 NIV

It was their last supper together.

A symbolic dinner that told the ancient story of freedom from slavery and redemption from death itself.

A lamb for each family that crowded the streets of Jerusalem that week.  A lamb sacrificed by a Temple priest.  A lamb that was consumed later as they moved through each symbolic element: the meat, the unleavened bread, the bitter herbs, the egg, the cups of wine, the applesauce.

The disciples were celebrating a holiday, Jesus was fulfilling prophecy.

Then Jesus put himself on the plate and in the middle of the story.

He picked up the bread, broke it and said, “This is my body given for you”. He took the cup and said, “This is the new covenant in my blood which is poured out for you.” 

Only God can make a new covenant. And He did.

After they celebrated the angel of death passing over those homes that were marked with the blood of the lamb, they witnessed the blood of the Chosen One being spilled under the lash of the whip and poured out on the wood of a Roman cross.

It was the last Passover Jesus had with His disciples before He became the Passover Lamb for His disciples and the world. 

For you. 

For me. 

Forever.

And He gave us a new way to remember it, we call it communion.

Called to Step Out

“By an act of faith, Abraham said yes to God’s call to travel to an unknown place that would become his home. When he left he had no idea where he was going.” 

Hebrews 11:8 MSG

God is calling you to step out of your comfort zone today.

To get where God has called you, you have to leave the place you are.

Maybe God is calling you to leave the shelter of some strategic comfort zones:

  1. life as you know it
  2. habits that hold you hostage
  3. mindsets that mold your world

The good news is that for every comfort zone you step out of, Jesus has a promise for you to step into and His love to guide you. 

God has a rich inheritance waiting to be claimed by you.

It is the inheritance of an unhindered relationship with Him every day.

It is more than a new plot of land, in Jesus, it is a new way of life.

Abraham left his country behind to go after his God-given destiny.

May your courage grow as you bravely choose to step out of your strategic comfort zones one “step of faith” at a time.

What “way of life” needs to go by the wayside today?

What habit is holding you hostage?

What mindset is holding you back from going after what God has called you to?

What Trips You Up?

“The godly may trip seven times, but they will get up again.
    But one disaster is enough to overthrow the wicked.”

‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭24:16‬ ‭NLT‬‬

What trips you up?

How do you fall?

Is it overthinking, overeating, over-controlling, overworking, oversleeping, over-it-all-so-I-am-quitting everything?

It really isn’t what trips you up that is dangerous, it is what keeps you down when you fall.

You fell.

You are human.

Get up.

You are loved.

God is not done with you.

You have a purpose.

God has a vision for your life.

Get up and take one step toward it today.

Faith

So that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men (human philosophy) but in the power of God.”    

1 Corinthians 2:5 AMP

When your faith rests in the wisdom of man, it will falter because at it’s best, it is a human attempt to explain divine power.

When your faith rests in your own feelings, it will surge and wane like the waves of the sea.

When your faith rests on your past experience, it can morph into whatever you have experienced, good or bad.

When your faith rests in the Son of God it is like a solid rock upon which the waves of emotion break, the wisdom of men shatters and He becomes the foundation of truth that gives your experience perspective.

Don’t make your decisions based on how you feel, what others say, or what happened in the past.

Ask Jesus to lead you and He will. The One who died for you rose again and sits at the right hand of God will show you the way forward.

He is bigger than your fears, knows what to do with your worries, and is working behind the scenes to bless you.

May today be filled with the promise of the finished work of Jesus and bring you to a new level of faith that is not tossed by emotions but anchored in God’s unchanging love for you.

The Ludicrous Dream

“By faith, barren Sarah was able to become pregnant, old woman as she was at the time, because she believed the One who made a promise would do what he said.”  Hebrews 11:11 MSG

We are born dreamers.

As children, we see that world around us and dream about being a part of it.

We dream about what our place in the world will be, what we will do, and who we might become.

The dreams revolve around us and what it will mean for us if those dreams come true.

As we grow up, there are some dreams that hold onto us more than we hold onto them.

It is those dreams that feel devastating when they shatter and remain unfulfilled.

We put them in the realm of impossible.

When the Lord told Abraham that Sarah would give birth, she overheard it and laughed (Genesis 18:11).  She laughed not because she thought it was funny but because she thought it ludicrous. The dream of having children probably died when she was in her 60s or 70s.  She had accepted her barrenness.

My friend, God often challenges what you have already accepted.

He will speak a word to you that seems impossible.

Something that seems ludicrous.

Something that you gave up on and now He is asking you to pick up again.

He is asking you to dream again but this time to dream it differently.

How? By placing your hope not in what the dream will do for you but in what God wants to do through you.

God asked Sarah to dream again. She knew she could not make it happen, she already tried. But somewhere deep inside she chose to trust God to do the impossible.

My friend, put your hope in God today.

And when He calls you to believe in the ludicrous dream again, say yes. 

Expansive Trust

There came a man who walked the earth, spoke truth to all who would listen, healed broken bodies and restored broken souls to God. It was His love that breathed life into the first lungs of man and His word that drove the darkness and chaos back before that.

He came to the earth He created for one purpose: to perfect love. The word perfect here doesn’t mean flawless as much as it means complete. Completed completeness. This love that bled when the lash tore open His back and wood of the cross dug into it, persevered through the unendurable physical and spiritual pain of the cross until He could utter the truth, “it is finished”. 

This love has been made completely complete. The debt of sin has been paid and the great chasm between God and man has been crossed.

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

1 John 4:18 NIV

When fear rises up to dismantle my faith or weave it’s tentacles around my feet to trip me up, I must remember this fact: I have nothing to fear. 

Christ took my punishment completely so that I could let His love complete me. 

Are you letting His love complete you?

Are you letting His love in?

Today, Jesus is holding out His love to you and asking you to take it, make it yours and start living in the expansive truth of it today.

Take it.

This is for you.