Imagine yourself at your ABSOLUTE worst. Stressed, angry, teetering on that narrow gauge rail between tears and rage. You’re depressed, frustrated, frazzled, exhausted, and ready to quit and/or run away from home.
You might be a mom or a student, a small-business owner, a minister, or a volunteer. Nothing has turned out the way you expected. The answers to your prayers seem to be delivered to other people’s houses. Your dreams for the future have slipped through your fingers like a mist. Even basic tasks seem to be too much to handle, but you slog along, day by day, trying to stay on top of the essentials like a circus performer balancing on a ball.
You’re trying to be a good parent, a good spouse, a good Christian, a good worker, a good friend. The problem is no matter how hard you try, you never quite feel like you measure up, or some other demand arises and pulls at you from another direction. You’re a hamster in a wheel, running faster and faster and never getting anywhere.
Now, imagine Jesus walking up to you in the midst of all that misery, pressure, and strife. He is the embodiment of LIFE – strong, healthy, relaxed, peaceful, bubbling over with joy, pure, honest, kind and loving. And here’s what He says to you…
“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.”
Jesus is not stressed out.
Jesus is not panicking about the state of the economy.
Jesus is not worried about natural disasters, plagues, or politics.
There’s no state of emergency in heaven. God is not looking over at Jesus, biting his nails and grinding his teeth, muttering, “What are we gonna do now?”
And instead of saying to us, “Do this new program. Try this new method for success. Work a little harder. Do a little more.” Jesus says something unexpected (doesn’t He always?).
Oh. My. Stars. If you don’t get all gooey inside at the idea of Jesus – King of Kings and Lord of Lords, the Prince of Peace whose name is Faithful and True – saying that to you, your wood’s wet.
But how often, instead of going with Him, letting him show us how to recover our lives, how to lay aside our worries and cares and burdens, we say, “Oh, thanks for the invitation, Jesus, but I’m so busy. You just don’t understand. I’ve got so much I have to do, so many things to finish up today. In fact, I’m already running late. Gotta go, bye.”
And we jump back in our hamster wheel and run ourselves even more ragged, until our bodies or minds start to break down and we can’t run any more. Somehow I think Jesus would rather we come away with Him than spend our lives chasing the end of the wheel in a frightened, panicked, high-pressured hurry.
The world – YOUR world – may be in a state of chaotic frenzy, but Jesus is waiting for you, hand extended, eyes shining with love, saying, “Come away with me.”
I’m not even going to wait till I brush my teeth. I’m going. Are you?