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The Rules Of Disengagement

In her book Throw Out Fifty Things, Gail Blanke outlines four “Rules of Disengagement” to help people clear the clutter from their lives. The first rule states: “If it . . . weighs you down, clogs you up, or just plain makes you feel bad about yourself, throw it out, give it away, sell it, let it go, move on.”

I think this Rule of Disengagement has a spiritual application too: We don’t have to stay connected to past sin. Joseph’s brothers struggled with this. Years after they sold Joseph into slavery, they recalled their cruelty and feared revenge (Gen. 50:15). So they sent a message to Joseph, begging for forgiveness (vv.16-17). They did this despite previous merciful actions and reassurances from their brother (45:4-15).

Many of us remain connected to age-old offenses despite mercy and forgiveness from those we may have hurt. However, true freedom comes when we confess our wrongdoing to God. He forgives it (1 John 1:9) and separates us from it (Ps. 103:12). As one verse puts it, He throws our sin into the depths of the sea! (Micah 7:19). Because of this, we can remind ourselves that the Son has made us free, and we are free indeed (John 8:36).

The price of our freedom from sin was paid by Jesus’ blood.