Why We Don’t Have to Hustle for God’s Love

Jesus loves us this I know for the Bible tells me so.

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I am a completer by nature. Give me a checklist or a project or dishes to put away. I will roll up my sleeves, invite the sweat and smile with satisfaction. So when Jesus declares, “I have brought You glory on earth by finishing the work You gave me to do” (John 17:4) I am interested.

I am ready to be busy. I want to perform well. I will hustle in the name of holiness.

See me nodding with the dusty-footed crowd when they ask Jesus, “What exactly does God want us to do?” (John 6:28). I am pulling out my newly sharpened pencil, ready to take notes. Then comes the reply, “The work of God is this: to believe in the One He has sent” (John 6:29).

I pause, unsure hand hovering over the page, and tilt my head in confusion. Did I hear that right? He only wants me to believe? I should be relieved. Instead I feel inexplicably disappointed. Because if that’s it, if that’s all, then it’s not about me. And it’s sure not about being perfect.

Hayley Morgan says in Wild and Free, “The opposite of faith isn’t doubt, it’s control.” These words reach all the way down to my self-strong and stubborn bones.

Because the reality is I feel safer when I’m working hard for God. It’s easier to tell myself I am worthy when I am in the midst of proving it. Strip me of my spiritual stunts and I am an awkward performer on a stage hoping for what? Applause for simply being there?

But the applause was never intended for us anyway and the spotlight is always and only to be swung away, away in His direction. And our work is simply to bear witness to His Word made flesh and say a “yes” and “amen” to Him with all our lives.

Jesus loves us this I know for the Bible tells me so.

This is the truest theology. This is the hum and rhythm our souls are made to dance to. We are not workers after all; we are worshippers. We are the broken made whole, the fallen and rescued, the messy and undeserving children jumping in endless puddles of rained-down grace.

God, give us the courage to live as beloved believers today. The ones whose souls have no hard-work callouses. The trusters who trade our pencils for an old wooden cross. The unexpectedly brave who look at the spinning, striving world and dare to say, “He is good. We are loved. That is all.” 


Holley Gerth

* If you liked this post you’ll love this book: You’re Loved No Matter What, Freeing Your Heart from the Need to Be Perfect.

* If you live in the Springfield, Missouri area I would love to see you at the (in)courage meet-up on June 9th!

(in)courage meetup


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About Holley

About Holley

Wall Street Journal Bestselling Author and Life Coach

I like humans, words, and good coffee. And I’d love to help you beat what’s holding you back, become all you’re created to be, and kick butt for the greater good.

Cheering you on,


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