Character is easier to build than to re-build. As believers we all received a fresh opportunity to have a new character constructed in place of the ashes and rumble of the old nature. Your character is you—the person hidden deep beneath the makeup, masks, and veneer. It’s the real you. At salvation the old you passed away—was in fact, executed on the cross—and a new you was created. You received a new character on which the image of Christ is being formed.
That character you received was the character of Christ manifested in you through the power and presence of the Holy Spirit. Sons and daughters recognize this and walk in the power of the Holy Spirit—thus, they are Spirit-filled. They surrender their desire to the desire of the King and fulfill His purpose and plan. In the process, their character is constructed and it becomes hard to tell the difference in their individual character and that of Christ. They literally become Christ fleshed out—they mirror the image and likeness of God through their actions and attitudes.
Slaves fear losing control. They hang on for dear life with their fingernails dug in and refuse to allow the Holy Spirit to be their guide. They give lip service to His power and presence, but run away at first sight, fearing a relinquishment of control. Slavery is bondage—bondage to an old way of thinking—to a limp and long dead character that was crucified on the cross when that person came to Christ. Fear of ___________ (you fill in the blank) has paralyzed them and neutralized their growth in Christ. They are busy (like a slave), but on the inside that new character (son or daughter) is suffocating. The bondage of slavery seems far safer than the freedom of sonship. Slaves prefer safety and control over the absolute freedom of surrender. Therefore, they daily forfeit through their personal choice the position and power of their birthright. They become paupers instead of princes and princesses—broken and burned out instead of blue bloods.
Consider for a moment which of these characteristics you find yourself living out. Remember your attitudes produce actions that, over time, reap a character.
Blue Bloods: Slaves:
Are willing to work Are lazy
Affirm even when admonishing Criticize and judge
See the positive See the negative
Are wise Are fools
Are rivers of living water Are broken cisterns and stagnant ponds
Have a generational world view Care about now and short-term gain
Are interdependent Independent
Willing to acknowledge need Self-reliant
Willing to suffer hardship to Unwilling to learn hard lessons and will learn hard lessons continually suffer hardships
The issue that will always separate a slave from a son or daughter is the character they choose to live out of. What will it be: One of control and survival or one of surrender to Christ?