Exchanging One Bondage For Another

I’m beginning to think some of us are born with a legalism gene.
I can turn ANYTHING into a rigid moral code. Diet, exercise, prayer, time management, attire, speech, work. (Maybe it’s that 1/16th Jewish blood.) Whatever it is, it’s beginning to get on my nerves.

legalism Pictures, Images and Photos 
Since childhood, I’ve been creating self-improvement strategies. (I tried setting up improvement systems for my family, too, but they didn’t comply.) At the end of every school year I’d analyze all my failures and faults, identify my goals, and set up a program for change. I’m bloody good at it, too. Over the years, I managed to morph into every social mold I stumbled across. Upon discovering the shortcomings of each one, I’d simply shift to another.

These days, I’m beginning to wonder if I’ve spent much of the last 40 years trading one set of chains for another. You see, it’s easy to jump into a nice, neat, ready-made system and force yourself to comply to its structure, whether it’s a denomination or a political party or yoga or vegetarianism or whatever man-made identification system you decide to hide yourself within.

But that’s not the freedom for which Christ has set us free.
True freedom is not exchanging one kind of bondage for another.

But it’s a heck of lot easier to jump from one ready-made corral to another than it is to jump from our man-made corral into legitimate freedom based exclusively on Christ Jesus.

 
As my daughter so eloquently put it this week, “It’s much easier to follow a list of religious rules and ultimatums than it is to follow God.”

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