The Good News in Jesus is that God has exerted His power and secured our rescue from sin and His wrath (Rom. 1:16–18). In Christ we are saved from our rebellious and futile efforts to find life outside of the One who gave us life. We are given rest for our souls:
“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, I will give you rest” (Matt. 11:28).
Jesus’s call loosens our grip on self-preservation so that we can take hold of him. It opens the door so that we can go outside and into His bountiful pasture: “For he is our God, and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand” (Ps. 95:7). Where sin has made the world small and convinced us that self-reliance is the only way through life, Jesus invites us outside and gives us faith in God.
The gospel of Jesus leads us outside of our self-centered world and into the wide world of God’s glory and pleasure. Jesus calls out to his disciples to enter into the care and providence of God.
“Do not be anxious about your life.” He goes on to say, “Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them.” Then, later, “Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all of his glory was not arrayed like one of these” (Matt. 6:25–26, 28–30).
The grass, birds, and flowers, as well as you and I, are dependent upon the Word of God. By the Word we are created and sustained. By the Word we are saved from sin and death. The Word of God is our only hope. For that reason, the Word took on the flesh of a first century Jewish carpenter. Jesus of Nazareth is the Christ, the Messiah, the Rescuer! He is our Liberating King, The Righteous One. He leads us outside of our worry and anxiety and into life as God designed.
from Go Outisde: The Adventure of Knowing God and Being Known By God, by Chad Karger (Lucid Books, Fall 2017)