During a conversation with some friends last week, I said something that, I later realized, could qualify as legalistic. I don't like legalism. It is stringent and stiff and backs you into a corner. And I don't like being backed into a corner. However, retrospect on this conversation is revealing to me that maybe I'm a legalist at heart. I see the world in black and white. I think I always have. Growing up, when told to do something, I obeyed because it was the right thing to do. On the odd occasion that I did break a rule, I was overwhelmed with guilt because I had done the wrong thing.
Living life with this black-or-white philosophy can be quite challenging. There are all these shades of gray, you see. Two of my children frequently wade through these shades of gray. And I've realized through the heartbreak of my husband's recent break from faith that he sees life in gray, rarely in black and white.
So what am I to do with all the gray matter that the world holds? I'm sure there are many philosophical roads that this question could lead me down. But it dawned on me today that I probably need to stop asking that question, and just start trusting that God knows what to do with the shades of gray. And with my legalistic, black and white heart.