HISTORY: Moses Reflections | Blog | Mount Carmel Christian Church

HISTORY: Moses Reflections

January 23, 2018 | Didi Bacon

One winter a few years ago my son was just a little guy and he got sick. He had this cough that would not quit. I thought he might have croup, so I took him outside to breath in the cold air. Well he did not get better, he got worse. It turns out he had asthma. Taking in the cold put him in the hospital. I felt so badly. I beat myself up with how could I have done that to him?  I should have known better. I should have been better informed. I should have taken him to the doctor.  

Do you do that too? You make a mistake and then you get into a tailspin of guilt and remorse all around how you “should have…” I have a counselor friend that likes to say that we all have a tendency to should ourselves. We get upset when we don’t get what we know we should get. We fume when we are treated in the way we should not be treated. We beat ourselves up because we should not have messed up. Should is always attached to guilt. Guilt feelings. Guilt status. Should is not a good way to live. 

The way of should works by measuring ourselves up against some kind of standard or expectation. The standard we measure ourselves up against then shows us where we should be or how we should behave. When you start to talk about standards and measuring up, you start talking about what the Bible calls law. We are all under law. There is the law of God communicated in Creation and embedded in our conscience. There is the law of God communicated in detail in the Bible. You know the Ten Commandments and all the laws given to Moses right there for us in the books of Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy. There is no excuse we all can know what we should do to be right with God. But none of us can do it. We fall short of God's standard. We fail in the way of should.

Therefore no one will be declared righteous in God’s sight by the works of the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of our sin. Romans 3:20 NIV

Paul says the purpose the law is so that we might be conscious of our sin. The value of the law is as a teacher that points us to the truth that we need another way to be right with God. A way that is open not closed. That way is the way of grace. It is an open way because it is not dependent on our “should” but it is dependent on the love, goodness, kindness and faithfulness of God. It is a way that turns the way of law upside down. In Grace we don’t get what we deserve because Jesus gets it instead. This way is accessed by faith. If we believe in Jesus we are set free from “should-full-living” to “grace-full-living.” Yes, I am making a play on words - grateful living. Living life as a thank you to God. Living for God motivated by appreciation not guilt or fear.

Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Romans 12:1 NIV

What God offers is to move us from being outsiders into being insiders when it comes to being in His family. What makes us insiders is not living by should, but living by grace. Believe in Jesus and be set free from “should-full-living” and be set free to “grace-full-living.” Living life as a daily thank you to God. Living life to honor Jesus. Living free of should.