slave waver

10 02 2012

there was no apple

When the writers of the Bible talk about people in being in slavery to sin it all seems a bit, well, harsh. Slavery? How many of us would say we are enslaved to sin? The language calls to mind images of the devil binding us in chains or possessing us in some scary poltergeisty sort of way. We may prefer to think that we flirt with sin, we may clothe ourselves occasionally, because actually it is just a bit of fun. Isn’t sin more fun anyway? Better to be in slavery to sin that befriended by boredom? Read here about evil and sin actually being pretty dull and banal and boring.

I  had 2 conversations with people a while back that went something like this.

Conversation1:

Me: Why did you assault my friend?
Person a: I had to defend my family.
Me: Perhaps that wasn’t the best way to react?
Person a: I can’t help it, it is how my family always react. It is in my genes. It is just the way I am.

Conversation 2:

Person b: why did you grass on my son?
Me: Because he was doing something dangerous and illegal.
Person b: We don‘t grass on estates. You want to be careful doing things like that round here.

My point is that neither of those men would say they are enslaved to sin; I would not say that to them either! But their reactions as grown men to situations around them come from a position of slavery. To the gene pool, to the domination system, to ‘the way things are’, the way that oppresses freely because that is how life is. I don’t say that as a value judgement on them. I honestly think they think they have no choice. They have seen no other way that works. As I wrote following the Faithworks Conference, that is exactly the kind of slavery that Jesus came to free us from.

It does not need to be that way. Our character need not be defined by our genes, our family and our upbringing, though they will always be part of who we are. Our character can be defined by the Holy Spirit living in us. The system of domination and fear that we live in and support by living in it does not need to define us. We can be defined by the kingdom of God not the kingdom of fear.

I pray for slave waver in our community. Where anger is replaced by patience, fear by love, fists by feasts. When teenagers talk about something other than sex and slagging each other and don’t need to get a rush from being (nearly) nicked; when men can  be real men instead of being something they think they ought to be and women can be themselves without fear of being judged or taken for granted or simply ignored.

My deepest longing is that this slave waver happens because people meet Jesus and by his Holy Spirit they are transformed and sanctified and other wonderfully big words and maybe I even mentioned being saved but… but… I kinda just want it to happen anyway whether or not they discover Jesus. Through our influence or through nothing to do with us. If slaves waver and the world gets better and looks more like the kingdom, I’m not so worried about why…


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6 responses

10 02 2012
neil stewart

To try and rectify things that are wrong in our communities is not grassing I think it is an obligation, whether it is someone at school being bullied or the fact that I can buy more than food at my local takeaway shop!!

10 02 2012
a follower of Jesus

The aggression in our lives is sad and scary and makes us feel vulnerable.
I was brought up in a family where I was physically punished, if I did a thing or not. I was brought up into a criticising, sarcastic, gossiping, negative environment.
My mum had been raped at an early age and then was in an abusive marriage. My sister, having been brought up in that environment was only “Happy” or so she thought, in abusive relationships with men, resulting, as you know in a partner ending her life in a brutal horrific way.
One of my brothers grew to be a father who smacked his children and thinks the way to tell his daughter how to solve a difference is to punch them. Whose son has had so many ABSO’s and even went on the TV as though it were something to be proud of. 3 of us had severe alcohol problems.

I don’t know how. But I was different when I left home. I am married to a wonderful, caring man. I vowed not to smack my children.
The gossiping and criticising took time to shake off. Instead of abusing others I abused myself in various horrid ways.
Then Jesus took up residence and is doing a good work in me.
A mixture of faith and therapy are helping me change.

Yes these people need help and guidance, some are not strong enough to do it on their own. It can only start, however, when they realise they have a problem. Yes when people can stand up to them and show them a better way. When people who are trained to help, do, and when people who have been helped or gone through similar things can show that one can change.
I now thank The Lord for what I have and am going through because it makes me who I am, scars n all.
I look forward, too, as you do, to a peaceful time when we can all get on with each other, whether we live with Jesus or not.

10 02 2012
Kevin

Thank you for your honesty. It is great to hear real stories of real change.

10 02 2012
oilofjoyandgarmentsofpraise

This is a great blog, Kevin! Just seen the link on FB.
Love to you and Fran. Praying for your work!
Fi

10 02 2012
Kevin

Thank you :-)

11 02 2012
120211–George Hach’s Journal–Saturday | George Hach's Blog

[...] slave waver (theblogofkevin.wordpress.com) [...]

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