Earlier this week I had a conversation with my friend Jon. We began by talking about a visual illustration that he had used on Sunday during communion where he had held up a to-do list and in front of us all had ripped it by way of illustrating that we don’t need to bring our accomplishments, our deeds, our perfectionism, our . . . whatever to make ourselves worthy of God’s love.  He loves us because He chooses to love us.  And we can draw close to Him in fellowship because He desires for us to do so. 

I told him I was learning to give myself permission to rest, but understanding that grace isn’t an excuse to shirk one’s responsibilities – I’m trying to find that balance.

He said, “It’s important that you learn how to let go of what’s behind, the this, so that you are freed to do what’s in front of you, the that.

And I said that it’s especially tricky when the this and the that don’t look all that different.

Sometimes the only difference between the this and the that is your motivation for it and your attitude toward it.


For instance, if I let go of the need to succeed and the fear of failure, I free myself to do.  If I let go of my need for perfection, I free myself to act.  If I let go of my fear that my decisions will be wrong and go wrong, I free myself to listen for God’s voice and decide.  If I let go of the thinking that I can do it all (and perfectly), I free myself to do some of it and to do it well.  If I let go of my cramped, circumscribed way of thinking about what my day should look like, I free myself to live now, this moment.

What about you?  What this are you holding onto that is hindering your that?

(Apologies to Jon.  The great majority of this conversation took place inside my head.)