But his delight is in the law of the LORD, And in His law he meditates day and night.
Several years ago a group of sociologists set out to study how children act on a playground. On the first day they observed the young people within the fenced-in area participating in a variety of activities. Some were playing organized games, others were on the swing sets and climbing bars, while still others were at the perimeter of the fence looking outward. The next day the scientists removed the fence. To their astonishment, this action did not result in the youth scattering themselves in every direction. Instead, the children huddled together in the center of what used to be the defined limits of their play area. Without that boundary, the children did not feel free to play.
Although it sounds contrary to logic, obedience to God actually results in freedom. Disobedience to His commands leads not to freedom, but licentiousness that results in a slavery to the results of sinfulness.
Can we truly say that disregarding God’s boundaries for us has made us more free? By setting our own standards for relationships are we more truly fulfilled, or do we go from liaison to liaison wondering why we can never be happy? Has our utter disregard for the Sabbath lead to more productive lives, or are we drowning in stress and lack of direction? While we are covet what the Joneses have, are we truly content in the many blessings that we already possess? Has the increased sexualization of society lead to a freedom of enjoyment, or are we left craving a true sense of intimacy?
Simple obedience to God leads to freedom – not to DO what we want but to BE whom God wants us to be. By following the boundaries that God has set in our relationships with each other can we truly know and appreciate the unique creation that each of us are. Knowing that the Sabbath was made for our benefit allows us to be creative in the ways we worship and rest. Only by praising God for His gifts and not comparing ourselves to those around us can we truly be blessed by God. When we understand the necessity of loving Christ with our entire beings can we be free to know love.
The commands of God are indeed a fence. But, it is a fence that truly sets us free.
O to grace how great a debtor
Daily I’m constrained to be!
Let Thy goodness, like a fetter,
Bind my wandering heart to Thee.
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love;
Here’s my heart, O take and seal it,
Seal it for Thy courts above.