Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Writer Wednesday Book Review: Jesus>Religion by Jefferson Bethke

I just stopped crying. It's a long story but it all started with one simple question from my sister in a not-so-nice tone of voice, What work do you have to do?

I've struggled for years with a fear of not being good enough. Recently, it's been magnified by the relationship with my family. Like I said in my last blog, they treat me as if my work doesn't matter, doesn't count for anything at all because most of the stuff I do, I do for free.

This isn't going to be a blog about all that I do because this blog isn't about me. Like I said, this blog is a review of the book, Jesus > Religion by Jefferson Bethke.

I've always struggled with the fear of not being good enough. Not good enough to my family because I don't have a paying job, not good enough for a guy because I have high standards that include not giving everything away on the first date, not good enough for a job because I've already spent eleven months without a part-time job and still haven't been offered or hired by one since my skill set for a normal job is a bit lacking in the conventional sense of the word. Not good enough for people who decided to walk out of my life or stop making an effort in our friendship. Not good enough for social media because my selfies never get retweeted.

Jefferson Bethke is one creative follower of Jesus I greatly admire and knew that his book would not disappoint. This book made me cry multiple times because with each page, I came closer and closer to leaving a religious mindset behind and came face to face with the real Jesus.

The Jesus who doesn't want what we do but just wants you. According to Bethke, in order to meet Jesus, we have to stop trying to be good enough and just go to him as we are: "I had a feeling of utter quiet and peace. I din't hear those words in my ears, but felt them whispered into the depths of my bones. Immediately, relief and the epiphany that I hadn't surprised God rushed over me. I hadn't caught him off guard. When Jesus went to the cross, he saw all I'll ever be, all I'll ever do, and all I'll ever want outside of him; but he joyfully came and got me. He looked down and said, "I want that one."

Bethke even talks about how there should be no major separation between sacred and secular anymore because everything that God created in this earth is good. (Genesis 1). Therefore, there should be no reason that a Christian always must listen to Christian music or only a select group of secular songs. Everything in art, politics, food, animals, plants, and trees are all good in and of themselves.

Everything we do can be done for the glory of God. It can be anything from writing blogs, making videos, doing PR work, cooking, cleaning, working on cars, being a CNA, being a singer, and even writing stories. All these jobs matter to God. The only thing we must take into consideration is that we shine with a borrowed light that is meant to be a beacon pointing the way back to Jesus and God. For example, Bethke points out that even the moon shines with borrowed brightness.

I'm so grateful that I have Jesus because he sees all that I do and doesn't ever remind me of something else I need to do for him in order to be happy with me, he just loves me. He just pursues me. He just comes and sits with me just the way I am: a creative chick with a destiny for greatness. The only reason I am able to do these things is because all talents come from God. And I'm so grateful for mine, and even more grateful for the fact that no talent is greater than any other. Every talent is a beacon of light pointing back to the Maker of Talents, the Great and Powerful One.

So please check out Jesus>Religion by Jefferson Bethke. It's not at all a waste of your time or like any other Jesus book I've read. If I had to liken it to anything, it's like a letter from an old friend that arrives just in time. One that reads:

I see you.
You matter to me.
I believe in you.
Don't give up.
I love you.

Until next time, remember:" I may not be as tall, as tan, or as talented as someone else, but that's okay. Nobody will ever be a better me. I'm anointed to be me. I'm equipped to be me. Not only that, it's also easy to be me."-Joel Osteen. Be You, Ladies and Gents. Jesus wants you to know that by being YOU, he calls you fearfully and wonderfully made.

Love Times Infinity,
God Bless!
~Just Keep Swimming~


  1. Now, that's a very powerful book. So hopeful and encouraging. Must be added to my reading list. :)

    Thanks! Hope you're doing okay, friend.

    1. You MUST add this to your reading list. It will sweep you off your feet and right into Jesus's arms in the best way.:)
      My Easter was ok. I had a nice dinner with my family. How was your Easter, friend?

  2. How was your Easter?

    Stay blessed always! :)


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