Last week I wrote about being “wired for compliance” and the “deconstruction-reconstruction” process that I’m in. I’ve been meditating on Mark’s words, “Previous roots of emotional security have to be torn down, deconstructed. Only then can you reconstruct with your truth according to what God is showing you to be truly yours.” I’m hopeful that uprooting the things that have given me false security and letting God replace them with my truth as He gives it to me means freedom at last!
Sitting with the Lord and inquiring what this looks like for me, I heard the familiar passage from the Gospel of Mark where Jesus is asked, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?” “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: Hear O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these.” I know I’m God’s child, but I won’t resemble Him unless I love like He does.
Show me what my truth is, Lord. How do I love a broken self and a broken world? We all stand equal at the foot of the cross, all completely dependent on His sacrifice for us. Equally guilty, equally loved. At the cross there is only One elevated, He who hung on the tree. I began to draw a picture in my journal, a cross with a stick man on it and a row of stick men under it. Of course, the man on the cross is Jesus. But then, without aforethought, I began to label the row of stick men with names: different Christian denominations, Republicans, Democrats, people of all races, LBGTs, and individuals with personalities that are opposite of mine.
The Scripture floated up from my inner being: Little children, love one another as I have loved you. And then I wrote, “When you look at your brother, see him as I see him, equally loved, equally deserving of grace.” I, too, am standing at the foot of the cross. But as I look at the sin of someone else, I need only look up at Jesus and know that He died for that sin….and that sin….and my sin. He who knew no sin became sin for us, that in Him we might become the righteousness of God. How can I judge my brother when He has taken that sin upon Himself? He died for the broken, and He told us that the way to reach them is by love.
So often men want to take the Bible and break it down into a “rule book” by which they can have some system of control, telling us who is one of us and who isn’t, who is right and who is wrong, and who fits the profile of a Christian according to their rules. Freedom means the ability to see God and encounter Him without human constraint. He is infinite and cannot be contained in the boxes that man has tried to put Him in. God’s Word is the story of a Father who loved His children so much that He sent Jesus to die for us all. He died because we are valuable, not to make us valuable. That’s how He sees us and how He wants us to see each other.
God gave us the gift of free will, and what a gift! The gift to change our minds. The gift to close up our rule books and find the way of love that Jesus deems as most important. I’m feeling a huge burden lifted. I’m no longer “playing by the rules” that constrain how I see myself and others. And I’m falling in love with Jesus all over again. I don’t know if this is the first step in my “reconstruction,” but I believe it’s the foundation for which all else with follow.