Growing up, I didn’t have the nature to be motivated by a, “Because I said so.” It may be because I’m strong willed. It may be because I had too much tenacity for a gal my size. “Because I said so,” simply never worked out (for my parents or myself). Yes, I found out the hard way (many times) that my parents actually were right. However, it was a process I needed to go through, to reach my destiny and pave the way for those who come after me. As I raise my kids, I try as best as I can, to answer their questions and make love the goal of their obedience, communication, and fun.
Some days call for a simple, “Because I said so.” Some days I see in their development that they need to learn the value of trust, more than they need a reason. However, for the most part, my husband and I explain our reasoning, fears, and thought process to bring our kids into our mindset or experience instead of pulling the “Because I said so” card. The value in communicating what we see and how we see it brings them into teaching moments with the goal simple being; love wins whether I understand how or not!
I will do for love what I am unwilling to do for rules, status, or religion. It should be our goal to create an environment in which those we influence (kids, students, family, friends, team members), do the right thing because they are motivated by love. This then translates into becoming a fully functional human and world-changer who is motivated by God and His love over being motivated by status, salary, and ego.
In the Old Testament (Numbers 6:1-21), Moses was instructed with the requirements for those that would be set apart for the Lord. These Nazirite, as they were called, were men and women who would protect their holiness and purity at all costs. It would be apparent to those around them by the way they lived their life even in their physical appearance. The vow included things such as abstaining from certain meats, sweets, and wine. They were also required to let their hair grow long and perform certain religious dedications and offerings to the Lord. This instruction for an alternative way of life expressed to the world around them that they had been set apart for the purposes of God.
Because of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross, we are under a new covenant, a new law. For those of us who would want to dedicate ourselves, our ministries, and our children into a lifestyle of purity, holiness, and consecration, our response is no longer to be a Nazirite, but a Neo-Nazirite. The millennial generation and the post-millennials are not looking to be committed to the Lord under the prerequisites of the law of religion – which tells them what they can and can not do (and often adds a “because I said so”).
They will, however, give themselves to love and take a Neo-Nazirite vow to pursue it. What they will not do for the law, they will do for love. It starts and ends with Love. Love should be the highest law of all of our lives (1 Corinthians 14). Ultimately, the relationship that God values and wants to have with us is one of connection. He wants us to be motivated by our connection with Him. That is where life is, in Him, not in rules. What an honor for us to adjust our behavior our choices, to protect His heart, something we can do to directly minister to His spirit.
I’m a Neo-Nazirite. I’m a disciple of Christ who longs to reveal the goodness of God to those who are willing to listen. I have short hair and I drink wine but I am passionate about protecting love at all costs, not because I have to or I’ve been told to, because love is sufficient, love transforms, and love wins.
Redefined by Grace,