After several hours in airports and on airplanes this weekend, I found myself feeling ill. It actually started before I even began my travels. I woke up Thursday morning feeling completely out of sorts. As the weekend, progressed, I felt a little relief, but by the time it was time to head back home, I felt sick all over again.
The worst part of this mysterious illness, wasn’t stomach trouble, or the pounding headache. It was the feeling of confinement. I don’t know if it was because the seats on the plane were so close together, or if my clothes were too tight (they weren’t), but For much of the weekend, I felt like some professional wrestler had me pinned in some uncomfortable position, from which I couldn’t escape.
Have you ever felt trapped? Ever been held against your will? Worn a girdle? It’s uncomfortable. It’s unnatural. It’s frightening.
So too, is the gospel message. Proverbs 3:3 says “Let not mercy and truth forsake thee: bind them about thy neck and write them upon the table of thine heart”.
The Acts of the Apostles says that Paul was constrained by the word.
James exhorts us to bridle our tongues.
It is human nature to want to exercise our beloved freewill. We want to do what we want to do, and in many instances, we do exactly that. But the gospel compels us to do things that are unnatural, and uncomfortable.(Love your enemies, and pray for those who misuse you.)
This is frightening.
We tend to focus on the scriptures of the Bible that emphasize our freedom. But every Christian is conscripted into service. We are bound by a set of out of this world expectations.
Upon deplaning, I found myself putting on the loosest articles of clothing I could find, and stretching out as far as I could. I imagine that’s what heaven will feel like, A life without bonds (and girdles, girdles are definitely from the pit of hell.)
Here’s hoping to find the very delicate balance of freedom and bondage that leads to a fulfilling life.
P.S. I watched two people tie the knot this weekend, and I can think of no better illustration for the perfect balance of bondage and freedom. What God has joined together, let no man put asunder.