The Restrainers

We could learn a thing or two from how God treats us.

When we look at the world around us, the chaos, confusion, pain, anger and rage, we just want to fix it all. We see the issues, we see the many sides clashing, we see that everyone believes they are right and everyone else is wrong, and we just want to jump in and fix it all.

I’m not going to lie, now would be a great time to have God step in, knock everyone’s heads together and tell everyone He doesn’t care who started the issues, He’s ending it and just get along. The temptation is there for all of us to want to be the one who has the answer and figures it out.

When we look at God, though, does He approach us like that? Or does He allow us the freedom to walk our path despite where it may take us? Yes, He makes it abundantly clear what the results of our choices and actions will be, but He still gives us the freedom to make the choices.

The church is described as the “Restrainer of Evil” in the Bible. As Christians, we read that and think that means we are all supposed to put on our capes and fix the world because we can stop the evil. That is not the case, though. Not when the ruler of this world is satan and not until Jesus returns in the fullness of His glory. Until that time comes our role as the church is to create pockets of safety in the midst of the evil. As the restrainers, we are not called to fix the evil of the world. That ship sailed long ago. We are called to hold evil at bay, allowing areas within the evils of the world to become environments of growth and life.

Very similar to a Garden of Eden, we are able to comfort and protect all who choose to find peace and safety within those environments. We are even called to venture out and invite everyone in.

What we are not called to do fight the people we are meant to save. The Bible makes it clear that the day will come when the restrainers will be removed and evil will be fully manifested upon the earth.

All appearances would suggest we are not far from that time.

I challenge you to create environments around you where people feel safe, where they can heal and not be harmed by the evil of the world. Restrain the evils from being able to attack the hurting and helpless.

At the same time, be wary of stepping outside of God’s pattern, which is to allow free will no matter how ugly It gets. He loves us enough to warn us, but He is wise enough to allow us the opportunity to learn for ourselves that He was right all along and we need to learn from His example.

The Restrainers

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