All of us our born with a deep need to belong. We desire to be accepted just the way we are; no strings attached. Yet at times all we receive is a counterfeit of belonging; an opportunity to merely fit-in if we follow rules. Our behavior must follow written and unwritten rules or else we will be kicked out of the group.  

In the midst of this constant exhaustion from playing by the rules, we can hear Jesus quietly beckoning us, “Come to me all who are weary and heavy laden and I will give you rest, for my yoke is easy and my burden is light” (Matt. 11:28). 

There are no rules. His invitation is open to all and it says: “Come!” God’s invitation to us is not based on where we work, the family in which we were born, or how we look. All that matters is that God fearfully and wonderfully created us and He longs to have a relationship with each of His children (Ps. 139:14).

However, God does love us too much leave us the way we are. A relationship with God of holy love is only possible when we too are holy. With a heart full of gratitude, we can joyfully exclaim that Jesus paid the price of my wayward behaviour. Through Jesus I can enjoy eternal relationship with the One who matters most—my Creator.

The world will continue to tell us that our acceptance is based on fulfilling certain conditions. Marks must reach a certain level to gain admission to university or a woman’s waist must be a specific dimension to enter into a beauty pageant. But in this world of condition, God offers us unconditional love and says “come as you are” I have paid the condition in full, your sin is forgiven, and a future of adventure awaits. 

How beautiful a place the world would be if we offered the same unconditional love to others. 

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