The more I learn about God, the more amazed I get at just how good He is! And He has been teaching me a lot lately about resting and how easy the Gospel is. The Bible talks a lot about rest. All the way back in Genesis chapter 2 we see God resting from His work. Its a topic that comes up over and over again throughout the Old and New Testament. And actually, not entering God’s rest is the ONLY thing we are ever told to be afraid of (Hebrews 4:1). In Matthew 11:28 Jesus says “come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Of course, Jesus wasn’t talking about physical work. We all work in some way, earning money at a job or taking care of a home and family. That kind of work is good, and most of us would be pretty bored without it. Jesus was talking about trying to work to earn our righteousness. He was inviting people to come to the cross and let everything else go. Religion tells us to “do something.” It says that if you follow certain rules, do the right things, and avoid doing the wrong things, then God will be pleased with you. And then if God is pleased with you, you grow closer to Him. But that’s all wrong, and religion misses the point! When it comes to God, He’s more of a “I’ll do all the work Myself” kind of God. God knew we’d never be able to do what was required to be righteous on our own, that’s why we needed a Savior so much. 2 Corinthians 5:21 says “God made Him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God.” Religion never lets you enter God’s rest, and that’s a big deal. The work Jesus did on the cross is all we’ll ever need. It does not need one single thing added to it. Our righteousness is secured in Him. We are now in Him, in perfect union with Him, abiding in Him. When God looks at us, He sees His Son. He is pleased with us and loves us the same way He loves Jesus. No amount of praying, Bible reading, serving, or anything else makes us closer to Him or more accepted by Him. Don’t get me wrong, those things are all really good things. Praying and studying Scripture are important. We definitely need to renew our minds and know His heart, and we mature as believers in the process. But doing them is purely for our enjoyment of intimacy with Him, not to earn anything from Him. We don’t need to seek Him because He already found us. We are one with Him, and we will never be closer! And as we enjoy our intimacy with Jesus, works will naturally flow from that. But we will be working out of love and a natural partnership with Him. So relax! Know that He is so pleased with you! He loves you and wants to bear your burdens. He is your Father and wants to take care of you. When He looks at you, He sees perfection and someone worth dying for. Rest at the cross and let Him do all the work! The Gospel is so good!