He brought them out of darkness, the utter darkness, and broke away their chains. Psalm 107:14 (NIV)
So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. John 8:36 (NIV)
So you’ve come to Jesus, asked forgiveness for your sins and accepted Him as your Savior. Here you are, standing before Him, with all your generational dysfunctions in tow as we talked about earlier. But God now sees you through Christ’s righteousness – clean rather than tainted by sin – clothed, as it were, in a white robe rather than filthy rags.
As you look around, you can see that the chains which bound you to your sin and generational dysfunctions are gone – you’ve been set free. By faith, you can clearly walk away and leave the rubble of your former life behind you. You can walk in newness of life.
And many do just that, never looking back. Others walk away, but before they get too far, they glance back over their shoulder. And some simply never leave their baggage behind. Instead, they pick it up and carry it along with them as they try to live their Christian life. You may ask, ” Why in the world would they do that? They don’t have to.”
Maybe you are the one looking back over your shoulder, or the one laboring to carry those chains and dysfunctions along with you. If so, can you visualize how different that looks from the believer who walks away from his past bondage and begins walking in freedom in Christ?
Let’s contrast the three examples. I picture the person who is walking in freedom from the weight of sin and dysfunction to have a spring in his step and a smile on his face as he eagerly embraces his new life – with trust and anticipation. I see the person who is looking back over his shoulder as being tentative, unsure of his decision and at times yearning for the familiarity of his old life.
The one who is trying to live a Christian life while simultaneously holding on to his past is the most miserable. He moves slowly and is bent over by the weight he is carrying. His past is so much a part of his identity that it overshadows his identity in Christ. Life continues to be a struggle for him, unfortunately at times, a struggle of his own making. He’s forgotten that he’s free.
May all of us, as Christians, remember who we are in Christ. And even though at times, we think we feel their pull, may we render our generational dysfunctions powerless in the light of God’s Word.