Thursday, May 24, 2012

Do you Measure up?

We live in a country that is trying to create a paradise here on earth, only to have the cold water dashed on its dreams.  Aging, losing jobs, death, divorce, etc.

If only we can work, work, work harder to belong, to achieve, to live up to some unattainable standard.  Why would people even care about Heaven if they can attain it here through their own hard work?   The lie is that paradise comes to the one who works hard enough. Isn't that the American dream?  The one who works the most hours. the one who studies the hardest.  The smartest.  The fasted. The funniest.  The prettiest.  The one who practices perfectly, becomes perfect.

And if we can't be the best, be the worst.  Even that seems to pay off.

And in spite of all we do, we never seem to arrive. Solomon in the book of Ecclesiastes calls it "chasing the wind".  It always seems to be within reach, but we are never able to grasp it.  The "it" I speak of is "a full and satisfying life". Paradise.

Of course, the experts unequivocally promise that if we do this or that, we will finally have that utopia.  You know:  good health, financial success, a beautiful home, great kids, a great career, a great marriage-- no problems.  No sin.  We'll finally be satisfied.  We'll finally have inner peace.  Everything will be perfect.

 The solutions seem so clear, yet no one can seem to execute them. 

And christians have believed the lies too.  In the name of being a good christian, I've found myself trying to be good, and feeling guilty because of my constant failures.   I've listened to the experts too, and I've continually added to my "to do" lists.  Since I want a good marriage, I must... If I want my kids to feel loved, and to reach their maximum  potential, I must... If I want to have financial success, I must... The list just grows and grows.  If I want to be healthy, I must...

And don't you love it when the "expert" changes his or her recommendation or when the "experts" have opposing views?

Why are we listening to these people and who made them experts?

I long for a simple life.  A life where I am free.  Free to fail.  Free to take risks.  Free to love. Free to dream.  Free to live out my convictions.  And life won't come to a crashing halt if I'm wrong, or if I fail.  

I need forgiveness, and redemption.  I need a remedy for my "not measuring up".

Our Creator, understanding the gravity of the situation far better than us, provided the remedy.  Jesus is that remedy.  I know His name is familiar, but hear me out.   Because He knew that mankind struggles with an endless  pursuit of that which we can never attain, Jesus came and achieved for us what we could never do on our own.  He measured up.  Not to human standards of being handsome, or funny, or rich... but to this perfection that we're all trying to attain.  He did it.

He never sinned.  He didn't even contemplate it.

Then He transfers His perfection to us.  At least He transfers that perfection to those who will receive it.  It's free.  And it's yours if you want it.  That's what His life, death and resurrection was all about.  It was about our Creator loving us so much that He gave His One and only son so that we wouldn't have to live apart from the source of life, hope, joy, contentment, peace, goodness, beauty... 

Jesus died so that we might be free. From what, you say?
Good question.

From ourselves.  From our "not measuring up".  We are like hamsters on the perpetual wheel of life going no where FAST. We all know we don't measure up.  Even if we consider ourselves good people or others consider us good, we know we just can't seem to get it ALL right.  There is always more to be done, with no end in sight.  Even those who have chosen religion to help ease the burden, often find new burdens heaped on.  Go to church. Give to the poor. Pray. Read the Bible.  Attend Bible Study. Volunteer at church. ..And the list goes on and on.

But Jesus offers the remedy.

"Come all who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble of heart, and YOU WILL FIND REST for your souls.  For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.  Matthew 11:28-30 

Are you tired of the hamster wheel yet?  

Jesus offers you a free gift.  FREE and no strings attached.

He offers you everything you've been working for today.  EVERYTHING you long for. EVERYTHING!

Whoever is thirsty, let him come and whoever wishes, let him take the free gift of the water of life.  Revelation 22:16

Only Jesus offers this free gift.  We can "measure up" because He offers us His perfection.   


  1. so enjoyed your post....and I several years ago stepped off the "hamster's wheel of going nowhere but round and round" experience freedom in worth it !

  2. So glad to hear that Rhonda. It is indeed a good life, isn't it?