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Celebrating your dependence day

I shared these thoughts four years ago in this post and got no feedback. But I liked it and hey, it’s my blog, so here it is again.   As we celebrate the 4th of July, of course we’re going to reflect on all that’s good about America. We have a rich Christian heritage and we’ve fought…
By Seth Barnes
By Seth Barnes
I shared these thoughts four years ago in this post and got no feedback. But I liked it and hey, it’s my blog, so here it is again.
As we celebrate the 4th of July, of
course we’re
going to reflect on all that’s good about America. We have a rich
Christian heritage and we’ve
fought tyranny around the world for the last century or so. It’s great
stuff worthy of all the fireworks

But let’s not confuse our heritage with
what is often
advertised as “the American Dream” – that good life in the suburbs with
all the
toys. Our independent ways can have a
spiritual downside, and we’re not unpatriotic to take note of it.

God wants a partnership with us where we are neither
autonomous, nor are we independent contractors.
We say it so much we lose the meaning: He wants to be Lord of our lives
– that is, He wants to be involved in our decision-making. He wants us
to depend on and consult with

Some Christians misinterpret this and won’t make a move
unless God tells them to. A much larger
group of believers fail to involve Him at all in their decision-making.

We are self-sufficient by nature; we have to be taught how
to depend on and consult with our Lord.
This is why the “American Dream” is so at odds with the life of
God. The American Dream is about
security and comfort. The two cars, the
house, the nice job, the insurance policies, can all release us from the
need to
depend on God. None are wrong in and of
themselves, they are just twigs in a nest.

Jesus told his disciples to pray for their daily bread. When you need
God to this degree, it gives
you the opportunity to see His goodness as He provides, which in turn
you to trust Him.

I am one of many American Christians who struggle with this
issue of trusting God (in the radical way that He wants to be trusted).
Because we don’t really
have to trust Him. And
many of us don’t fundamentally know if He
is trustworthy.

Self-sufficiency is an insidious trap that can sideline us
for life from God’s Kingdom purposes.
Which is why it is so important to practice the life of abandon as an
exercise of our will before our nests become so comfortable that leaving
seems impossible.

Happy Independence Day everyone – may God grant you a measure of
dependence on Him as well.

Comments (7)

  • This is the thing I am most afraid of: settling down and “living the dream.” For the same reasons you pointed out, I am afraid that I will lose my faith in God. So every year or 2- whenever things started to feel comfortable, I would pick up and move to another city or state and do something else to keep things challenging. I have been in Louisville (5 years) for the longest I have ever been anywhere in the last 10 years. I graduated college and realized that I am still afraid of living a materialistically blessed life, but I am realizing that the biggest challenge to my faith yet is learning to have faith in times of blessing. It seems easier for me to trust God when I am on adventure and living on a prayer, but the hard part is not trusting in myself when I am blessed. Also, I don’t need to move or hit the mission field to step out of my comfort zone and challenge my faith- neither do I have to live paycheck to paycheck.

    I am learning to be where I am.

  • Hey over there, you guys celebrate independence from the Brits today. Set me thinking that actually in the Kingdom of God, we not only need dependence on Him (and yes, I like this blog Seth!) but interdependence on each other because of Him too. I may be British but I still need you!!

    And I think you are spot on Seth about why we struggle to trust Him. It’s because we don’t really HAVE to in practical term. While He is a choice, we’ll always struggle with that. I think that is partly what Jesus means when He says it is easier for a camel to get through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. It’s not that being rich is wrong, it’s just that it can be hard to still be dependent and humbly trusting towards God when it isn’t strictly necessary to meet your daily practical needs.

    Btw, my friend’s definition of “rich” is “anyone who has slightly more money than me.” LOL!

  • Thanks for the reminder that we need to reinforce our dependence on Him. Lone rangers will not make it in the end.

  • Had I read this 4 years ago, I probably would have made a comment, but it very well might have been quite different from the one I’ll make this year.

    I love this post and it is the biggest struggle most face. Very few of us in this country truly have to rely on God for our “daily bread”. It’s been something I’ve struggled with remaining dependent on God despite my abundance of blessings.

    So, yes, Happy 4th of July and may God give us more dependence on Him on the day we celebrate our independence as a country.

  • Choosing dependence on the Lord has made me independent to most people back home. I think more of us could embrace our independent dependence on the Lord.

  • Sometimes (probably most all the time) our abundance in the USA ends up being more of a curse for us! How could this be that we as a nation pursue our God in the early days and have deep dependence on him, only in later generations to turn away and trust in our economy and general welfare.

    I do pray that we will turn our eyes toward him, but history tells me that we will need a lack of economy to do so! It is so ironic that we mistake and forget the blessing of God and seek reliance on our jobs and economic status.

    Just maybe, this may all change – much sooner than we all could have ever imagined! “Oh God, do what you must do to capture our hearts”.

Comments are closed.

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Seth Barnes

I'm motivated to join God in his global reclamation project. He's on the move, setting his sons and daughters free from their places of captivity. And he's partnering with those of us who have been freed to go and free others.

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