Two weeks ago, I had the opportunity to hear Ravi Zacharias, a renown Christian apologist, speak at an event located right outside of Atlanta, Georgia. The purpose of the event was to discuss the power and influence today’s media has on popular culture.
During his 30-40 minute presentation, he made this one incredible statement; one that will remain with me for quite a while:
“…without TRUTH, education is moved to the skeptical, spirituality is moved to the mystical, and art is moved to the sensual.”
Now more than ever before, we are living in an age where matters of faith and morality differ from person to person. What has long been considered true is now (in the eyes of many) debatable, while those things that we have always believed to be false or in contrast to our faith, are now being adopted and accepted as cultural norms.
This reversal of truth unfortunately exists within today’s Body of Christ as well.
As a result of our individual and collective life pursuits (money, relationships, position, etc.), many of us at times have thrown aside the principles of our faith to pursue a sense of FREEDOM that is completely void of His truth. For some odd reason, we have bought into the lie that the freedoms we want to experience in Christ as believers, can come about without certain rules and boundaries.
We have created a generation of believers who now have a longing for the mystical to occur in their life, rather than embracing the truths behind sowing and reaping. We want to gain, but refuse any pain associated with it. We want to earn, but refuse to learn what is necessary to do so.
As believers, we really have this FREEDOM thing all messed up.
Isn’t it interesting that the very first time the word “free” is mentioned in the Bible, God follows it up with a boundary for that freedom to occur:
Then the LORD God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it. And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat; but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die. – Genesis 2:15-17.
Here we see God from the very beginning, providing mankind with instructions on how he can flourish FREELY within the garden He provided, along with the BOUNDARIES he needed to observe in order to live and succeed. While the Bible is full of these kinds of examples, we can learn even more about how God wants us to properly balance our freedoms as believers by looking at His creation.
Take a river for example.
A river is a body of water that is in constant movement, capable of sustaining life because of a flow of fresh water. Isn’t it ironic that free flowing rivers are typically surrounding by a variety of boundaries.
Whether they consist of rocks or dry land, these boundaries help keep the water focused and flowing productively. However, whenever a river exists without any boundaries, it is no longer a river.
It becomes a swamp.
Today, if you are confused or at times find yourself upset with God because your life has begun to look like a swampland, rather than a river of living water, remember this one undeniable TRUTH:
God will never answer prayers that would enable us to live more independently of Him.
The freedom God provides us as believers to walk in is in fact not free at all.
It requires boundaries. May we all commit to establishing some today.