Nothing More You Need To Do

There is nothing more you need to do to be a Christian.

That should get your attention. Not only is it an attention-getter, it’s true, too.

“Wait,” you cry. “What about obedience? What about living for God?” I’ll get to that, but, first, let me explain the first sentence of this post.

All that you need to do to be a Christian is believe and receive. Believe that Jesus paid the price of your sins and my sins, once and for all, on the Cross. Believe that He was raised from the dead, defeated death, again – once and for all, and is now seated at the right hand of God. Believe that He lives to intercede for us. Believe. But now comes the crucial part.

Receive. Receive this seemingly unbelievable gift of God’s overwhelming love.

Maybe I have it backwards. Maybe it should be Receive and Believe.

Receive the amazing show of God’s enduring love and then believe. But not only believe what I’ve already mentioned, but so much more.

Because of the love of God in Jesus, you are now accepted as you are right now. Believe that. There’s nothing more you need to do. Jesus Himself said, “It is finished.” It’s already been done. Rest. Take a deep breath. Believe that. Relax and receive. Oops. There it is again. Receive. Believe. Receive. Believe…

Now, about obedience…

Obedience comes from a thankful heart. A grateful heart obeys God’s commands because the grateful heart knows all about God’s love. God’s love has already paid the price. God’s love is always looking out for my best interests. Because of God’s love, I want to obey. He knows best.

I am free of all the requirements. I am free of all the checklists. I am free of trying to prove myself worthy of His love or His sacrifice. I am free of trying to pay Him back. The work’s already been done. He’s done the heavy-lifting. I am free. Because of the overwhelming love of God and the freedom that it brings, I am compelled to live my life for Him.

As Tullian Tchividjian says:

“Legalism says, ‘Obey, so God is pleased with you.’
The Gospel says, ‘Obey, BECAUSE God is pleased with you.'”

This is the Gospel. It was… and IS radical. It is good news not only to those who first believe and receive (or receive and believe). But it is also good news to those who’ve already believed and received.

There is nothing more you NEED to do.


“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30)

In The Message, it reads:

“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.”

Humble pie

I wonder what the Lord is trying to teach me…

Last October, I made plans and surprised Sharon on our 15th wedding anniversary with an Alaskan cruise this summer with Inspiration Cruises. I planned it with a couple extra days in Seattle before the cruise to sightsee and a couple of days after the cruise as well. Being an Inspiration Cruise, I planned the excursions and even signed up for the “Choir Track” for Sharon. She gets to practice with Michael W. Smith and perform with him with the rest of the choir in an onboard concert and in a concert in Juneau, Alaska. The cruise also features David Jeremiah, Phillips, Craig, and Dean, Nicole Nordeman, Scott Hamilton and others. It is going to be fabulous. I used miles/points and we’re flying free to Seattle and back. We even arranged for Sharon’s son, Adam, to be in town to house-sit and dog-sit for Bella. It was all well-planned, if I do say so myself.

This past Sunday, Sharon stumbled coming down some steps at church and badly sprained her foot. It’s the same foot which she injured two years ago in an anniversary trip to San Francisco. We went to Med-Express Sunday afternoon, they took X-rays and found nothing broken. They prescribed rest, ice, compression, and elevation. That’s what you do with any sprain. And we walked out of there with Sharon on crutches. We iced it for two days and Sharon tried packing for the trip. She did virtually all of her packing and then rested it and iced it some more.

Yesterday morning, she could barely move and her other leg hurt from favoring her injured one so much. I didn’t see how she was… we were… going on this trip.

I was mad. I wasn’t sure who or what I was mad at, but I was mad. Mad at Sharon (it’s not her fault!), mad that I didn’t purchase trip insurance, mad that all the planning for sightseeing was going to be spent driving around in the car… or worse, we weren’t going at all.

She called an sceduled an appointment with Orthepedic Associates at Augusta Health. They did x-rays as well, which were negative, prescribed the same rest, ice, compression, and elevation, and sent her to get an “air-cast” to stabilize the foot. She walked on it and now thinks she can handle the trip.

I am so wretched and so self-centered. All I could think of was how it all was going to affect me and MY plans. Life happens. Accidents happen. Stuff happens. It’s how you react that matters. I didn’t react so well. I didn’t pass this test.

I don’t want another one.

(We leave late morning. Sharon has the air-cast on her foot. I’m bloated from eating humble pie)