Flowing Faith

Letting Go of Shoulds

| 8 Comments

Letting go of shouldsDo you have a lot of “shoulds” in your life? You should this and that and every other thing. The first step of letting go of shoulds is to change your vocabulary. Replace all the “shoulds” with “it’d be great if”. It’d be great if all things worked out. But if not it’s not the end of the world. This is all great and has helped me to put less pressure on me but I have even better news for you. Letting go of shoulds happens best by letting Christ do what he came to do: bring us peace.

For to us a child is born,
    to us a son is given,
    and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
    Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
    EverlastingFather, Prince of Peace.
(Isaiah 9:6, NIV, emphasis added,*)

Christ came to give us peace.

Without Jesus, we are God’s enemies, eternally separated from him. But because Jesus died on the cross for our sins, our enmity with God was put to death for all who believes in Jesus. Without Christ, we don’t have grace. But with him, there is plenty available. For everyone who needs it and wants it.

What does grace have to do with letting go of shoulds?

Everything. Without grace, our life is full of shoulds. The demands of life weigh heavily on us. But with grace, our life is full of peace. Because the prince of Peace himself comes into our messes. And that makes all the difference. Jesus makes all the difference.

Too often we forget God provides everything we need to live according to God’s will. Our life is full of shoulds when we try to do things in our own power. God has already done everything for us in Jesus. And he is still doing everything for us in Jesus. Our life can be full of power if we let Christ do what he came to do: bring us peace.

For he himself is our peace (Eph.2:14, NIV,*).

Jesus is our peace

This is the most amazing thing: Jesus himself comes in our midst. Think about it! God’s answer to us is always Jesus. The presence of God in our lives is more than talk: it’s Jesus among us. Jesus working alongside with us, creating love and peace among us. Jesus, all we ever need.

 

Gracious God,
It’s hard to understand your love,
even just getting a glimpse of your goodness astonishes us.
You’ve done everything for us:
first, you saved us
and now you’re empowering us to live victoriously.
Be praised forever, Lord.
Thank you for all you do for us.
We need your help of letting go of shoulds.
Thank you for living with us.
Pour out grace upon grace.
In Jesus’ precious name,
Amen

Q4U: Is letting go of shoulds hard for you? Do you realize Jesus is with you?

An announcement for friends of Flowing Faith:

I will be writing less at Flowing Faith in the coming months because I need more time to write a book manuscript. I am hoping and praying that I could finish it over the summer months but we will see. My posting schedule will be Tuesday-Friday from now on. I will be looking forward to interacting with you then. Also, I welcome your prayers for the project and anything and everything that surrounds it. Thank you very much for your understanding.

Be blessed, my fellow pilgrim, as you let Jesus be your peace!

* [As you might have noticed, I enjoy reading the Bible in different translations and love comparing them. I have started linking the Bible verses toBiblegateway.com so you can easily read (and compare) them in the different versions I’ve used while preparing each post.].

Image courtesy of Steve Halama via unsplash.com, design by Mari-Anna Stålnacke. Linking up today with Dance with Jesus, Five-minute Friday.

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  • Alice Nine

    Amen. And Isaiah tells us Jesus is our Counselor… He will lead me and show me the “should’s” that I should accomplish. He gives me His wisdom! May your work on your manuscript flow smoothly this summer. Visiting from #17 at FMF today.

  • Yes! There are so many “shoulds” in my life, but I try to remember that God’s timing is best, and live with the knowledge of His grace. Still, I appreciate the reminder, because I often forget.

    • We do need reminders of God’s grace every single day of our lives. Otherwise we drown in “shoulds”. But how blessed we are that we have a loving Father who wants the best for us. Thanks, Heather! Have a blessed weekend!

  • Andrew Budek-Schmeisser

    Love this, mari-Anna…the knowledge that grace frees us from the shoulds of the world is just lovely.

    I will be praying for you, and can’t wait to see your book…I know it will enrich and change many, many lives.

    #1 at FMF this week.

    http://blessed-are-the-pure-of-heart.blogspot.com/2017/05/your-dying-spouse-306-but-i-still-trust.html

    • Yes! That’s what grace is all about: freeing us from burdens. And shoulds really do wear us down. Thanks so much, Andrew, for your prayers and encouragement. Abundant blessings to you, brother in Christ!

  • Sarah Geringer

    Your suggestion to replace the shoulds with “it’d be great if…” is a good one! Congratulations on the book project. I hope your manuscript encourages many!