What was your reaction when government officials in your country announced lockdown regulations to curb the spread of COVID-19? If you had the virus and ordered to self-isolate or quarantine, what has been the range of emotions you’ve experienced? Anger? Depression? Sadness? Moody? Fatigue?
Do you feel Controlled? Limited? Imprisoned? Lonely? Walls are closing in? Paranoia? Overwhelmed? Frustrated? Impatient? Restless?
Have you lost your Passion? Creativity? Can-Do attitude?
Are you Fearful? Hopeless? Miserable?
And what have you wanted to do or resort to? DISOBEY? REBEL? FIGHT BACK? DEFY the lockdown rules?
If your answers are yes, then you have a glimpse (albeit partially) of LIVING UNDER THE LAW.
Whenever any law is announced, even if it is simply, STAY HOME, WASH YOUR HANDS, or DO NOT TOUCH YOUR FACE, your intrinsic inclination is to disobey and rebel. Even when you know the law is there to protect you, you simply cannot resist the urge to roll your eyes and act in defiance.
What government officials now fear is this—if they extend the lockdowns further, there will be riots in the streets. We see it happening in the USA. Imagine that the most developed nation in the world, a nation that has prided itself as being the law and order nation, a nation that has tried to its level best to export its brand of democracy around the world, its citizen refuse to obey the simple rule to stay at home. And yes, brace yourself for riots around the world because this is what the law provokes in us—rebellion.
Some Christians unaware of the workings of the law are increasingly complaining and defying government regulations. If you chat with them, they’ll tell you they are fighting for religious freedom. The truth is this; what we witness in these Christians is a manifestation of a heart that is reacting to the law. No one wants to be under the law. Not even the religious type.
Why? Because of the sin nature on the inside of all of us. We are all rebels by nature. We get this from our first parents—Adam and Eve. This is who we are. Your real you—your sinful self lies dormant until a law is enacted and then you emerge.
So when I hear some Christians disparage grace and insist on the law, that they want to live solely under the law, I shake my head. They don’t know what they are in for. This scripture always comes to my mind.
1 Corinthians 15:56 NLT
For sin is the sting that results in death, and the law gives sin its power.
The antidote to the rebellion inside all of us is GRACE. It’s only grace that can tame, hold back, and transform the rebel in you. Paul puts it this way,
Titus 2:11-12 (ESV)
For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age…..
In other words, grace saves us (brings salvation for all people), and then grace trains us to do what is right. Therefore, without grace, the lockdown rules will gore at you, prod you for a reaction, and you will succumb to the pressure.
You really have to get grace if you will survive and even thrive in this lockdown.
Grace that will restrain your restless heart.
Grace that will calm your anxiety and worry.
Grace that will strengthen you when you become weary.
Grace that will give you the courage to face the darkness.
Grace that will be your companion through these dark times.
That’s what grace looks like