Friday, March 18, 2011

Serving...or controlling?

“It is difficult not to think of the elder brother in Jesus's parable of the prodigal son. The people God addresses, like the elder brother, complain that God is not doing their will, and that they deserve his support since they have been so obedient. But the truth is that their obedience is only formal and external; it is filled with self-righteousness and is motivated by a desire to control God, not actually serve him. Such people show they are complying with religious observances as a way of 'getting ahead' with God and others. This deadly spiritual condition shows itself in a lack of loving service toward others, and particularly an indifference to the poor.”— Generous Justice, pages 96-97

<idle musing>
This sounds like his book The Prodigal God, which I blogged through a while back. Still true today.
</idle musing>

1 comment:

That's my 2 cents! said...

You've touched on something I am deeply concerned with. Since I grew up with a controlling/manipulative father, I want to get as far away from that as possible. God doesn't manipulate. He owns us, but he never acts like he owns us. Satan on the other hand acts like he owns us, all of our lives. I desire relationship, not ownership.

Relationship is much harder, and calls for us to give all, without much (if any) expectations. It is freeing, but also scary. It is preferable, but the desire to control is powerful.

If we pursue the the vertical relationship with God, he can, and will make horizontal relationships possible.

I'm loving reading this book by the way.

Love you and Debbie!