I absolutely love to travel and see new places. I love the airport. I love trying new food. I love meeting people with different experiences than me. I am just totally jazzed by it. That explains, in part, why I flew to Germany by myself with a three-year-old and a one-year-old. But, I’m not gonna lie it was A LOT.
And it’s not like I couldn’t envision how hard it might be. I’d already taken many trips with small children. In fact, when we were a family of three I’d never been to California. Will was speaking at a conference in San Diego. I don’t turn that kind of thing down, so we tagged along. Baby Dub was thirteen months old and had been all-out running for three months. The trip out was mostly uneventful, and since the return flight is significantly shorter, I was super optimistic.
But Dub decided he wanted down, hated the confinement and essentially screamed his head off for the last two hours of the nonstop to Washington Dulles. It was embarrassing and exhausting. Hilariously though as soon as the wheels touched the runway he yelled out in a loud but calm voice: “ALL DONE!!” and stopped crying. He didn’t make another peep as we taxied to the gate, and he waited patiently for the 30 plus rows ahead of us to deplane.
Predictably “all done” has taken on a life of its own in the Jackson household, yet as joyful as those words were for my giant and miserable toddler, they don’t compare to the gravity of the expression uttered by my Savior on the cross. He said, “It is finished.” But a toddler translation could easily be: “All done.”
And like I mentioned in last week’s blog, as Christians we are not required to do one single thing to secure our salvation. Jesus did it all. Any works we might attempt are like filthy rags by comparison. The work is finished. We can’t earn anything. We can’t prove we are good people. It’s ALL DONE!!
However, I appreciate the clarification from one of my pastors a few years back: God is opposed to earning, not effort. In fact, effort coupled with the Holy Spirit is important. First off, obedience born out of love is the natural outgrowth of realizing it is truly all done. Secondly, all of history testifies that human flourishing is highly correlated with living subject to biblical wisdom.
Are you living subject to God’s Holy Word? Or are you attempting to carve your own path? I’m praying that we can have eyes to see that His Way is the freest and most joy-filled, even if that seems impossible.
Just look at The Ten Commandments. Obedience does not result in less freedom, or a restricted, joyless life. Instead obedience is the path to greater freedom. I think we’ve lost sight of how godly restrictions result in more liberty. It’s the paradox that it is all done — there is nothing left for us to do, and yet the more surrendered we are to God’s way, the freer we are.
It is always good to remind ourselves that God loves us, and that His guidance is always motivated by Love. Plus, His level of thinking is just a little beyond ours.
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:8-9 ESV
Do you believe His thoughts are higher than yours? I hope so. I hope my life illustrates I believe it too.
Have a fabulous weekend resting in the fact that it’s “all done,” while also knowing that every moment of every day is an opportunity to express your gratitude for the finished work of Jesus.