My dad tossed me the keys, “Tell you what, Son. You can have the car for two hours all on your own.”
How wonderful those words sounded! I had just earned my driver’s license, but I’d been learning to drive for many months in East Houston. Most often, my dad sat in the passenger seat, patiently giving me tips. (My mom, when she came along, was too busy biting her nails to give advice!) The best, though, was when my grandfather took me out in his 1939 Ford. I’d bump into things and wince. He’d say gently, “Don’t worry...I can buy more fenders, but I can’t buy more grandsons.”
My heart raced as I backed the family car out of our driveway all on my own. If I drive 100 miles an hour, I thought excitedly, I can make it to Galveston and back! I can fly down the Gulf Highway, run a few lights! When you’re a teenager, some of your thoughts are crazy!
Want to know what I really did? I drove the speed limit and I came back home early. Complete freedom, total privacy...and I didn’t go wild. Why? My relationships with my dad and my grandfather were so strong, I couldn’t betray their trust. Love—not rules—held me in restraint.
Someone once said: “Love God with all your heart...and then do as you wish.” Isn’t that great? Grace is risky! But grace balanced with love leads to living a liberated life that honours God.
Have you been liberated by grace? I mean really set free—not just free from the eternal penalty of sin but free to live and be yourself on this earth? Listen, Scripture is clear on some things. If you love God with all your heart, then you’ll usually align your life with Scripture! But when it comes to those “grey areas,” it’s not my job or anyone else’s to tell you what to do. My primary job, just like yours, is to live a life that’s truly pleasing to God, not others who would love to control you.
Many Christians have been told what to do for so long they’re afraid of being “all on their own.” The result? Perpetual immaturity...ongoing adolescence! Without trust and freedom, maturity won’t emerge.
People who are taught to study and apply the Scriptures, encouraged to love God with all their hearts, and then trusted to do as He leads them are no longer tied to impulses. They’re able to think independently and feed themselves spiritually. They’re unshackled from the tyranny of legalism. They’re able to operate their lives independently and become the people God created them to be. They’re free!
THIS is one of our main goals at Insight for Living Canada! We teach others how to study and then apply God’s Word so people, all across the country, can become spiritually self-sustaining followers of Christ who live in the joyful freedom of grace.
Will you link arms with us in our mission? Will you help us declare God’s grace across the country by sending a donation to Insight for Living Canada today? Please do!
Let’s be about the business of setting people free together!
With grace and love,
Charles R. Swindoll