Recently we experienced a cool morning - one of those times when you remember that fall will be here soon. A friend posted a photo of her toddler riding her little tricycle down their driveway wearing only her panties. I commented that this little one was "free to be." And then I pondered the beauty of that statement. "Free to be."
Also, I have been hearing the song "The Beauty of the Cross" resound in my mind at random times. The chorus:
The beauty of the cross is that there's One who has redeemed my soul.
The beauty of the cross is that I'm finally free and letting go.
The beauty of the cross that that Your grace has found me just as I am.
As a Christian, I am "free to be" - loved just as I am. I can let go of everyone's elses expectations of me and believe what God says about me. He says I am His beloved and adopted child, accepted and forgiven. My true identity is only found in who He says I am. In Him, I find rest for my soul. I am free to obey and free to do good works, not to earn anything or receive anything, but because I have this joy and love that must be expressed. My soul cries out to act.
A few days ago, I read a passage in Timothy Keller's book "The Reason for God." He says, "Both religion (in which you build your identity on your moral achievements) and irreligion (in which you build your identity on some other secular pursuit or relationship) are, ultimately, spiritually identical courses to take. Both are "sin." ... Religion operates on the principle "I obey - therefore I am accepted by God" but the operating principle of the Gospel is "I am accepted by God through what Christ has done - therefore I obey."
Simply put, religion says "I did. I earned. I obeyed." The Gospel says, "God did. God gave. Now abide." Both result is good works, but only the Gospel points to God and glorifies Him.
What a glorious way to live, "free to be."
But you will not see me riding my bicycle "a la natural."