I recently read a quote by Jim Fowler and I thought I would share:
It appears that the majority of Christians, if given a choice of working on a chain-gang or walking across a swinging suspension bridge with no handrails, would opt for the chain-gang labor. It is tiring and monotonously predictable, but you can't fall off. It may kill you, but it's a methodical way to go! The swinging-bridge of grace is scary. It is as unpredictable as God Himself. Security is only found as we "fix our eyes on Jesus" (Heb. 12:2) and are "led of the Spirit" (Rom. 8:14; Gal. 5:18), trusting Him to keep us standing by His power (I Pet. 1:5). That requires faith! Many there are who will choose the chain-gang of religion over the swinging-bridge of grace.
How often do we see Christian's try to put God into a neat little box; to try to and construct a God of their own choosing who is tame and predictable...a God who is safe. Their God is one who expects nothing more of us than to slavishly follow a prescribed ritual regardless of the attitude of our heart. But this isn't the God we serve. The God we serve is a consuming fire that leaves nothing that it touches unchanged.
Our God causes the comfortable to be shaken and the shaken to be comforted. He causes the proud to be humbled and the humble to be exalted. He causes the strong to be made weak and the weary to stand tall. He causes the mouths of the bold to be made silent and the mouths of the timid to speak with power. He confounds the wise with the foolish and gives mercy to the sinner and sorrow to the self-righteous. It would seem that our God is a God of opposites, a God of contrasts. On the surface that would appear to be the case, but each of these “contrasts” all have one thing in common…they bring glory to God.
It seems that the fear of falling has kept too many Christian’s working on the chain-gang. There is a certain amount of comfort there. But God isn’t interested in our comfort and He is unimpressed by how well we do the “religion thing.” God wants us fearlessly abandoned to Him. Fearless of what man can do to us! Fearless of what tomorrow will bring! Fearless even unto death! Fearless of stepping out and living in the freedom He has given us! But this will never happen while the fear of falling has us in its grip. It’s a scary thing, this fear of falling. It keeps us off the swinging bridge, it keeps us off the ledge, and it keeps us safe. This isn’t what the “God of Opposites” desires for us, for God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and love and discipline.
To be continued…