Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.

This is how much God loved the world: He sent me, his one and only Son. By trusting in me, anyone can have a whole and lasting life. God didn’t go to all the trouble of sending me merely to point an accusing finger, telling the world how bad it was. I came to help, to put the world right again. I came so that you can have real and eternal life, more and better life than you ever dreamed of.

What’s the greatest commandment? “Love the Lord your God with all your passion and prayer and intelligence.” But there is a second to set alongside it: “Love others as well as you love yourself.”

You’re familiar with the old written law, “Love your friend,” and its unwritten companion, “Hate your enemy.” I’m challenging that. I’m telling you to love your enemies. Let them bring out the best in you, not the worst. When someone gives you a hard time, respond with the energies of prayer, for then you are working out of your true selves, your God-created selves.

Here is a simple, rule-of-thumb guide for behavior: Ask yourself what you want people to do for you, then grab the initiative and do it for them. Add up God’s Law and Prophets and this is what you get.

You’ve observed how godless rulers throw their weight around. When people get a little power, it quickly goes to their heads. It’s not going to be that way with you. Whoever wants to be great must become a servant. Whoever wants to be first among you must be your slave. That is what the Son of Man has done: I came to serve, not to be served-and then to give away my life.

If you’d like to talk with someone about your thoughts or questions about Jesus, contact us.

[Adapted from Jesus’ sayings in Matthew 11:28-30; John 3:16-17; John 10:10; Matthew 22:37-39; Matthew 5:43-45; Matthew 7:12; and Mark 10:42-45 in the Message paraphrase. Check out the Scriptures for yourself.]