No Sweat

Matthew 11:28-30 (Message Bible) “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 love that, the unforced rhythms of grace.  When it comes to exercise, I know that I’ve done an exceptional workout when I sweat.  I know I’ve put a lot of effort into it, exerted a lot of energy, pushed my body to the max.  Not so with grace.

As part of the curse, Genesis 3:19 says, “In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, til thou return to the ground.”  Meaning man would now work hard to make any progress, and sweat it out in an earth cursed system.  Verse 17 says “Cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of your life.”  Sorrow, here, signifies struggle, putting in great effort with little results.  Not so with grace.

This doesn’t mean that we will never work.  It simply means that our labor will not be in our own strength or efforts or wisdom or by the “sweat” of our brow as under the curse.  We are now under a new covenant and a new system. We’ve been redeemed from the curse.  Jesus said “Come to Me”, “Get away with Me”.  Then He says, “Walk with Me” and “Work with Me”.

Jesus never toiled or stressed or panicked or worried.  He simply went about His day in peace and resolve.  Before the curse, Adam and Eve walked with God.  Jesus is calling us to walk with Him, depend on Him, work with Him, enjoy a life of grace, His unmerited, undeserved favor.  It’s like that Easy Button at Staples, an office supply store.  You press it and it says, “That was easy”.  That’s the unforced rhythms of grace.