Our minds have been so shaped by law, due to fear and shame and guilt and the fear of punishment, that this idea that the Father Jesus revealed to us just seems to be too good to be true, so we just settle for the old paradigm instead with a little language of grace and freedom added to it. Believe me, I know, I lived in that dysfunctional environment myself for a long time. The dismantling of the dysfunctional environment I myself had been living in is by far the toughest thing I have ever had to face and then walk through. And yes, that environment included other people, but I'm more specifically referring to my inner core...my head, my heart, and my soul...my false self. The Spirit does business with our dysfunction with us as individuals. It's a real shock at first because the law has mostly kept us believing that the mess was mostly everybody else's fault and at that moment what others are doing doesn't seem to be causing a bit of concern to the one that has come to set you free.
These dysfunctional houses we build are very difficult to deconstruct, and on our own, it's actually impossible. The pain involved in the process can not be avoided and often we end up wrestling with and resisting the liberator that has come to set us free. I'd like to once again share something that speaks to the painful process of liberation. To be set free we must understand we are going to lose something/many things. What is so stunning is how the dysfunctional environment has become such a part of us...has become so familiar that we will fight God and others in order to hang onto it. Sometimes we have even convinced ourselves that the dysfunctional environment is God.
The move from law and bondage to grace and freedom is a radical move.
"Man is so much the prey of the powers, so closely associated with their work, enjoys himself so thoroughly to their profit, desires so much all that they offer, conceives his life to such a degree separated from God, that every approach of God, every positive work of God, appears to him as an unacceptable disturbance and finally an attack against him. When God comes to deliver him, he does not at all perceive his liberation; he protests against the breaking of those marvelous objects, which are his chains or the doors of his prison: the adored chains. This is clearly the situation of Man."
"And we must take account of the fact that every work of liberation (the process of freeing us) is in fact destructive of the evil environment. And that which assures his liberty is felt by Man as a frightful personal offense. "How can God who is good permit…?" In uttering this phrase so frequently, Man does not envisage for a minute, first of all, that the evil deed is most often the result of the liberty that God allows to Man and of the independence and autonomy that man has seized over against God. Man is responsible for what is done (and he has wished it), but he protests against God for what is done. In short, he would demand that God mechanize him and take his liberty from him."
"Next, that evil also takes place by the interplay of the spiritual powers who act in the world and in society. Finally, that which does ‘evil’ to him can very well be the act of God who liberates him. But this liberation causes suffering. I do not know anything better to compare this to than to an operation. The surgeon who takes out a cancer destroys the power of death to the profit of the living body. But he removes something of this body, which had become "flesh of his flesh’; he amputates something which had become the body itself. And the patient who does not know what has been done, from what he has been saved, could perfectly well interpret that as a frightful torture, as an illegitimate extraction, being aware only of the pain that remains after the operation is finished." Jacques Ellul