Sometimes I think we’ve made religion too hard. We’ve set the rules. We’ve kept the rules.
Have we? We’ve made sure all the people know all the rules.
What if it’s not about rules at all? What if it is simply about the heart and falling so deeply in love that everything about you changes…for the better? What if it really is just about relationship? A relationship full of grace, and forgiveness, and second-chances, and compassion, and such a deep kindness that it is a relationship you never want to leave and you only want to grow.
Religion often feels to me like people trying to protect God. People want to limit who has access to Him, or at the very least limit what kind of behavior is acceptable in his presence. This is nothing new. It’s been going on since the Bible.
You can’t come near Jesus, you’re a child. You can’t have a meal with Jesus, you’re a drunk. You can’t talk to Jesus, you’re a dishonest whore. You can’t invite Jesus to your house, you’re a thief. You can’t honor Jesus because you’re shameful. You can’t touch Jesus because you’re dirty and have nasty diseases.
What’s the message? Get your life in order. Grow up. Get sober. Stop sleeping around. Be better. Do better. Clean up. You.are.not.welcome.
But that message isn’t Jesus’ message. It’s not. That’s a human message, not a Godly message. All those people… the drunks, the diseased, the slutty women, the people who had all the things wrong with them – it was Jesus who welcomed them first. Who approached them first. Who, before they ever did one thing to clean up their lives, talked to them, listened to them, ate with them, drank with them, and loved them. He made the first move. A move simply to be close to people who others didn’t think were “worthy of God.” He needed no protection.
“That’s a human message, not a Godly message.”
I love what Paul says in his letter to the Roman people. This is how he talks about religion.
“You’re not “doing” anything; you’re simply calling out to God, trusting him to do it for you. That’s salvation. With your whole being you embrace God setting things right, and then you say it, right out loud: ‘God has set everything right between him and me!'”
Religion is so easy.
With your whole being you embrace God setting things right, and then you say it, “God has set everything right between him and me!”
What if it was that simple? What if that was our prayer?
God. Set everything right between you and me.
Or, what if that was our mantra?
God. You have set everything right between you and me.
If we embraced that…what changes, who do we become?
Hit me up with your thoughts in the comments below!
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