“We do not wish either to be, or to live among, people who are clean or honest or kind as a matter of duty: we want to be, and associate with, people who like being clean and honest and kind.” – #CSLewis (Emphasis mine)
Whatever I do, and whatever I say, even whatever I think, I want to do because it is my choice, my decision – not because someone tells me. I am very aware of how utterly blessed I am to be born in the U.S.A.; to live in a Republic and not in a Socialist country or in a Dictatorship. Here, I can say whatever pleases me; good, bad, ugly, or indifferent. I can disparage the government without fear of reprisal; I can attend the church of my choice. America is still a land of opportunity for those who are willing to work. (Apparently, there are an awful lot of people who have made living off others and the government their “opportunity.” – but that’s another story!)
I can have the expectation that success and comfort and riches will be handed to me through no effort on my part, but for the vast majority of us, that will never happen. Those things only come through hard work and dedication. I know people who live a certain way as a matter of duty, but that is not me. I hope people who know me see that I am clean-living and honest and kind because it is my choice, my life; because it is how I want to be – not because of any rules or regulations or orders. It is not a duty that compels; it is not the ‘rules’ that require me to be this way. My devotion and my love for my JESUS, my LORD, makes me want to live that way. As the apostle Paul wrote:
“I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little.” – Philippians 4:12 NLT
This is not an easy task, but it is not difficult, either. It is not easy, because we have to commit our lives to the Living GOD, and it is never easy as a human to let go of control. It’s not difficult, because through our surrender, we become free. Like the butterfly that struggles to get out of it’s cocoon, or the bird struggling to break of it’s shell, once we shed the confinement of our earthly wants and desires, we are free to fly! To soar with JESUS, above and beyond anything earthly. When we are with Him, it is easy to be content in our hearts, no matter the circumstance. We still need to be present in the world so that we can let JESUS shine His Light through the flaws and cracks in our earthly shell. We need to be present, both to give and to receive blessings.
Where do you stand today? Clean, honest, and kind because you choose, or because it is your duty?