The reason for the growth of bureaucracy in American life is a loss of confidence in the spirit of God, al loss of confidence in human dignity, a turning to law from grace. This is a rather obvious historical development that can’t be discussed because we are now a secular nation.
When grace and spirit are excluded, the solution for broken relationships is always law.
Love and freedom are replaced with law and regulations. Here is the cause of the rather random impulse toward Romanticism, New age experiments, and other man centered attempts to find what Edmund Burke called the unbought grace of life.
But perfect love casts out fear. Only Christians who live by grace can restore grace to the world. And that will always begin in the church, the home, and the community. It will never be a global revolution. It will be achieved by the quiet martyrdom of death to self.
Maybe this is the fundamental social miracle of the gospel. We don’t need to use the law to bring about our hopes for the future. We don’t need to coerce people into the kingdom of heaven. We believe that the grace of God will achieve it’s purposes. In fact, we believe that when we step in and try to achieve God’s ends through law or any other effort of the flesh, we create catastrophe. The story of Abraham and Hagar has reminded us of that from our beginnings.
But we Christians are a lot like the younger Abraham, the one before he had learned to laugh. We don’t trust in God’s grace to achieve His ends, so we try to enforce them by our cleverness.
It’s time to lighten up!