“…You have not received a spirit that makes you fearful slaves,” (Romans 8:15). But isn’t that how we behave so often?

As God’s slave, value is placed on our performance. We believe we must “diligently” (read: anxiously) seek His will in order to obey, and it’s only through obedience that we can fulfill our purpose. In other words, if we aren’t disciplined enough, we’re stuck.

it’s an inferior, impersonal, transactional form of connection with a distant authoritarian that produces anxiety. It’s steeped in a “do-er” mentality. My “life” is in my self-control, and if I mess up, I’m doomed. I’m sure you can see where this type of connection turns ugly.

As we read further in the 15th verse we understand that we’ve actually received God’s Spirit “when He adopted [us], in the bliss of which we cry ‘Abba, Father.’”

Friends, we’re not slaves anymore - we’re His children!

 A child of God states, “I connect with God not to discover His dictates, but to enter into an intimate, love-filled conversation.”  

As God’s child, value is placed on *connection,* not performance.

It’s a close, person-focused father-child relationship that produces rest. It’s founded in a “being” mentality. My life, my purpose, or my “bliss” is sturdy in my identity as God’s child.

Simply stated, I connect with God not to discover how to be a better child, I connect with God to discover how good of a child I already am. What I “do” is a simply a byproduct of my conception of my identity.  

We don’t chase after God like a slave to acquire heaven. Connection with God is heaven itself. 

Do you dread God’s voice? It’s an indicator that you haven’t experienced God’s true nature. In 1 John 4:18 it states, “If we are afraid…this shows that we have not fully experienced his perfect love.” Why are we afraid? We fear punishment from God. We might believe the lie that God wants to stamp out our dreams and desires.

I did, and it kept me from connecting with God for years.

It’s a twisted kind of fear, really, because connecting with God means revealing your true self…the “you” God created you to be, along with all your dreams and desires.  

So the alarm goes off. It’s 5:45 am…the dreaded call of discipline rings…but, instead, you enter into a *conversation with God* about what your wants and needs are that day. Together, you and God decide what is the best strategy for the day. It may include working out, or it may include a self-care day filled with naps, song-writing, and a healthy home cooked meal.  

Are you God’s slave or are you His child?

> Read part I and part III of this series