God is not so afraid, weak and insecure as to have to force people into heaven or hell. His being God does not require or depend on anyone of us doing good or evil. He is complete in Himself. We neither complete nor deplete Him. If you go to hell, He does not become less God, you, become less. If you go to heaven, He does not become more God, you, become more. Nothing we do has any bearing on His essence or on His Love. As Philip Yancey said,
“There is nothing you can do to make God love you more. There is nothing you can do to make God love you less.”
With God, you are free to be faithful or faithless, good or evil. He has no need to compel you to be good. Freedom, is the nature of Love. Compelling people to do anything is tantamount to slavery and that comes from a place of profound weakness not strength. It comes from insecurity and is motivated by fear.
If you have to compel people to be good to you, you are in fear, not in love and even if you are married, what you have is slavery not marriage. An enslaver is so insecure, so weak that they do not believe they can be provided for, loved and cherished, without force and that is a terrible place for any human to live from. A person who has to compel their spouse to love them is not in love with their spouse but in fear with their spouse and where there is fear, there is no love, the last time I checked.
If I compel you to wash the dishes, I am robbing you of your power to choose to wash the dishes and there is a tendency that you will wash the dishes not out of love but out of fear and fear is a conducive environment for all kinds of evil.
But what if your not washing the dishes actually hurts me? Love bears any hurt and is so whole as to forgive you while you are busy driving in the nails. Rather than cry for vengeance, Love recognizes how deep your powerlessness is and has compassion on you while you are busy robbing. You rob because you have not. If you have, you will not rob. An enslaver enslaves because of a deep sense of poverty. If you are rich, you have no need to rob or enslave another. Robbery and slavery are kin. Slavery is an attempt to rob one of choice and will – fundamental qualities that make us human. Slavery dehumanizes and desecrates a human being, the holiest thing after God.
What if you compel me to wash the dishes? Love responds to abuse by giving freely, more than an abuser is trying to seize forcefully. Love shifts the context of engagement from a robbery whose parameters are determined by the robber whether it is a boss, a spouse or an armed robber, to an offering whose parameters are determined by the lover. Instead of compelling you to wash the dishes, Love permits you to never again wash the dishes. Jesus gave His disciples the permission to unfollow Him. They chose to follow not because they were forced to but because they chose to see that “you alone have the words of life.”
Emptiness, weakness, insecurity, fear is the reason we enslave people and rob them of their most fundamental right to choose.
Slavery is not just a historical reality. It is a present reality in homes, in workplaces, in private and in public. Love is the solution to it. Love, omnipotent love has no need to enslave. Where there is Love, I can choose to become enslaved to you. In fact, becoming enslaved to the lover is the reasonable thing to do in response to the Christ kind of Love, the Love that bled and died in our stead.
When you are in Love, you are in God, fully secure in the secret place of the most high and fully protected under the shadow of the Almighty. Who can rob you? Who do you need to rob? Who will you not love?