"I will rejoice in the simple gospel."

An ELI core value is "Grounded in the Gospel." We define this value as: "The gospel of Jesus Christ is the foundation on which we base, steward, and measure our influence." Delving deeper, what might this mean for us on the journey of growing Christ-centered influence?

As I know is true for some of you, I enjoy starting out the day by centering my heart with sweet worship playlists. This past week, I was struck by the song, "Simple Gospel," by United Pursuit. Specifically, two verses resonated with me:

So I’m laying down all my religion
I’m laying down
I want to know You, Lord

Lord, I’ve been told to be ashamed
Lord, I’ve been told I don’t measure up
Lord, I’ve been told I’m not good enough
But You’re here with me

I love the "simple" gospel truth that these lines proclaim: The gospel isn't something that we earn or prove ourselves worthy to receive. Rather, it's only in laying down our lives and an idea of "religion" that we find a personal relationship with our God. In this real relationship with Jesus, we no longer have to fear being ashamed, not measuring up, or not being good enough (Ephesians 2:4-10; Romans 1:16). Instead, Jesus invites us to let all of these things go (Matthew 11:28-30).

Do I live grounded of this gospel? Am I freely serving and influencing others with the belief that I already have all I need in Him? What have I yet to lay down that is preventing me from experiencing this incredible reality to the fullest? My Reputation? Comfort? Relationships? Schedule? Fears? 

Living a life grounded in the gospel may mean:

  • Stepping away from a stable job or stepping into an uncertain future, as you feel God calling you to steps of faith.

  • Standing firm in your convictions or speaking the truth in love, especially when it's not the easy thing to do (Ephesians 4:12).

  • Persevering well in serving your workplace, even when you feel wronged or experience suffering for Jesus' sake (Romans 8:15-17).

  • Saying "no" to an opportunity now to instead invest in a relationship or area of life that you know you've been neglecting.

  • Recognizing and laying down a personal desire or pressure in order to fully embrace the freedom in the better that God has for you.

We've only scraped the surface. As we continue to wrestle with Jesus' leadership practice of servanthood, what might living grounded in the gospel look like for you this week in the workplace? What could God be calling you to lay down, dying of self, so you can exchange the good for the best, influencing from and through your identity in Christ? It's time to let go.