I think you'll find the fifth chapter of Unforced Rhythms a refreshing read. "Just Live!," the chapter title, was given to me one day when I was crying out to the Lord for help with my angst over daily devotions. No doubt, these words came from the Spirit's voice. It was exactly what I needed to hear. Just live, Gwen. Just live.
Some of us try so hard to do things right–to please God or others–that we simply need to take these words in deeply, giving ourselves permission to live freely and lightly.
I'll never forget the time I was sharing this story as I was teaching on Life Rhythms. In the middle of the workshop, we all heard an audible sigh. I looked to see where it was coming from. A young mom was repeating the words "just live" as she exhaled, seemingly letting out all the pent up angst of striving. With relief, she commented, "I needed to hear that."
Sometimes we get caught up in the wrong things. I'm not talking about sin or wrong choices here, but as Christians we get mixed up with what really matters. God's words to me that day by the living room chair were said with compassion, giving me reassurance and encouragement to simply live.
Consider what the Apostle Paul wrote to the believers in Galatia (love this book about grace) who were getting caught up with rules and regulations, particularly if the Gentile believers should be circumcised or not (Gal 5:2–6). He basically said that it (circumcision) doesn't really matter. "What matters" he wrote, "is something far more interior: faith expressed in love" (5:6 MSG).
Then, in his closing remarks, he reminded them what else really matters. "It doesn’t matter whether we have been circumcised or not. What counts is whether we have been transformed into a new creation" (6:15 NLT).
This, my friend, is what matters. This is what counts. A changed life, made new, free to live and love others.