“The Invitation”

Do you hear it?

He’s calling.

His voice keeps reaching out to you. To me. To us.

Just listen for a moment…

“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 rhythms 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, The Message Bible)

Jesus is constantly inviting us all to enjoy his friendship and apprentice with him. He wants to teach us how to live more fully. How to break the cycles and quit wearing ourselves down.

His invitation is easily drowned out by the noise of life’s business, but it’s also the only antidote to that very noise. It’s an invitation to take a whole new approach to doing things…

Christ is inviting us to a more restful, quiet, undistracted life. He’s inviting us to a more rhythmic, routine, simple life. He’s inviting us to a life of greater fulfillment, meaning and contentment in the here and now. That is, instead of always reaching for the next big thing that offers to satisfy us.

Jesus is inviting us to prioritize relationships over accomplishments. Quality time over time getting tons of things done and living with a constant fear of missing out.

He’s inviting us to let go of pressure and demands, and to learn things like humility, authenticity, contemplation, and stability (the kind produced by trust, rather than by our mere human “grit”).

He’s inviting us to learn better self-care so that we have more to give to others. He’s also inviting us to bond more closely with others, and to learn and grow in nurturing community together. He’s inviting us to stick with the process, and to “go low and go slow.”

And he’s inviting us to fall deeply, madly, obsessively in love with him — for his joy and our benefit.

Don’t rush past the invitation when it catches your attention. Yield to it. His offer is the offer of eternal life, abundant life, ever unfolding within your present life. It’s worth following along.

He’s only got your good in mind… your peace and your wellbeing.

Don’t worry about what your “calling” is and how to fulfill it. Just come with him. Come to him. He’s got so much to keep teaching you.

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You Are Not What You Contribute

You are not what you contribute.


I know the world tells you the opposite. Every social media influencer, every motivational speaker, every “creative” and “thought leader” repeatedly puts out the same message. They assert that you’ve got to get your grind on and contribute SOMETHING to the world today in order to make your life meaningful. But it’s actually not true.

If you were an infant, a child with severe down syndrome, an elderly person in a coma, or even just a full-time janitor who no one ever noticed — guess what? Your life would still be significant. That’s because your personal value is not based on the sum of change that you create. You are infinitely loved for who you ARE, not what you do.

Don’t get me wrong, I love to create. I love to encourage others to release the powerful energy within them too, for the betterment of the communities around them. I genuinely believe we all have something special to offer in some form or fashion that can bless and benefit others. We’ve got to keep in perspective though that all of that is the overflow of who we already are. It is not what defines who we are. Our value does not increase based on how much positivity we are exuding or how much good content we materialize. We are valuable because of the divine beauty seeded within us, whether or not it is ever fully seen for what it is by society.

So yes, go make your impact. Go share your voice and give people tons of inspiration. Be love, even as you are loved. But feel free to take plenty of time to just breathe and to just receive unmerited grace too. You don’t have to crank something out to be important. You matter just as much when you are sleeping as when you are touching lives and killing it at fulfilling your calling.

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Restful Intentionality

Is Christianity all about grace? Is it all resting, receiving, and soaking in God’s generous, unconditional love?

Yes, yes, and yes. Our posture never changes. We are always and forever the recipients of His transformative, life-giving touch. We’ll never escape this life of utter dependence and gratitude.

But is there somehow a place for living with intentionality? Do we make decisive efforts to let grace shape and re-shape our lives as we embrace the paths of spiritual growth?

I think the answer to this question is also “yes,” but it needs to be qualified more. It’s very possible to get our eyes off “God’s part” in our relationship with Him (which is EVERYTHING), and to re-assume responsibility for our own salvation and maturity by focusing on “our part.”

Our part is but to lean into the Truth that His part is enough. Over and over, and then over and over again, we actively and passively find ways to internalize the simple Gospel reality that He has become for us the complete totality of all that we will ever need.

“Because of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption, so that, as it is written, ‘Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.’” – 1 Cor. 1:30-31

We lean into His love. We savor and remind ourselves of His loyalty. We build upon the rock of revelation that HE has chosen US (John 15:16Ephesians 1:4), not the other way around. We surrender, but we are surrendering to the One who utterly surrendered His own heart to us at the Cross — and He never pulled it back.

We are disciplined too, sure. Sometimes that means we make challenging decisions in life as we get to know God and offer ourselves in obedience to Him. Ultimately though, if we are seeing things clearly, it’s HIS irresistible initiation, HIS sustaining fuel, and HIS guaranteed hope for where we are headed that moves us and gives us a focal point for all of our discipline and intentionality.

“For I through the law died to the law that I might live to God. I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. I do not set aside the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the law, then Christ died in vain.”      – Gal. 2:19-21

We feed on, dwell on, stand on, and fight from the fullness of radical, unmerited favor that our amazing Jesus has brought us into. This is what renews our mind. This is what reorients the trajectories of our lives. This is the only thing that sets us apart from our spiritually insecure and striving neighbors.

This beautiful Gospel is key at every stage of our growth. We are never moving past it. And in the face of both religious traditions and secular systems of peer pressure that have shouted the opposite message for millennia — our greatest struggle is always to stay centered here in our beloved-ness in Christ.

“We love because He first loved us.” And “His mercies are new every morning.” There is no other anchor for our soul and no other wind powerful enough to fill our sails and carry us into our destiny.

“For it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.”  – Phil. 2:13

May it never be said of us as it was for the Galatians,

“O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? It was before your eyes that Jesus Christ was publicly portrayed as crucified. Let me ask you only this: Did you receive the Spirit by works of the law or by hearing with faith? Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by [the strength of your own] flesh?”      – Gal. 3:1-3

Rather, Lord, keep and wash our hearts ever more in Your healing grace. You and Your profound sacrifice are all we need, everyday.


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