Our Bible verse for today: “If you died with Christ to the elements of this world, why do you live as if you still belonged to the world? Why do you submit to regulations: “Don’t handle, don’t taste, don’t touch?” All these regulations refer to what is destined to perish by being used up; they are human commands and doctrines. Although these have a reputation for wisdom by promoting self-made religion, false humility, and severe treatment of the body, they are not of any value in curbing self-indulgence.” Colossians 2:20-23 (CSB)
Our thought for today: “God has given you freedom to make choices”
Over my years as a Pastor I’ve had many conversations with people who were seeking the Lord’s direction pertaining to some issue in their life. Usually they were looking for, and expecting, some detailed guidance from the Lord, or a burning bush of some sort, to show them exactly what to do. But that’s not usually the way in which God guides us. Sometimes it is. Sometimes He does have a specific and very detailed plan that He wants us to adhere to. But usually not. More often he gives us Biblical boundaries to stay within, along with a general direction to move in, and then he gives us a gentle pat on the back and prods us to move forward in life.
In Colossians 2:20-23 Paul was writing to the Christians in the city of Colosse about the freedom they have in Christ. In their case they were struggling with Old Testament dietary restrictions. They thought they needed the Levitical list of strict rules and regulations to provide a menu of what was okay to eat and what wasn’t. Paul’s message to them was that God no longer deals with His people like that. In the New Testament Age, He has given us the Holy Spirit to guide us and He has given us the freedom to make well-informed choices of our own.
This is a common New Testament theme that’s taught repeatedly in different passages and contexts. God is like a loving parent who raises His children to think for themselves and to make good choices of their own. He provides us with the Bible to provide us with the parameters or boundaries that we must live within but beyond that, for the most part, we can then consider the choices before us, make our own informed decisions, and move forward. We usually don’t need specific step-by-step instructions from our Father about what to eat, or what to wear today, or even what job to take or where to live. In those cases where He does have a specific direction for us, He has plenty of ways to communicate that to us. But usually, like a loving parent, He wants us to be able to make good decisions of our own without having to rely on His constant intervention and guidance.
So be prayerful, and be Biblical, and then go live your life.