We all have different levels of difficulty when it comes to how well we follow the rules. Some of us find it exhilarating to look over our shoulder and jay walk across the street when there is no crosswalk; others need a little more stimulation in order to feel the adrenaline that comes with doing what we’re told not to.
Growing up, most of us hear about the do’s and don’ts of life and so we base our way of living accordingly, but some of us choose to disregard these rules and decide to follow our own set of rules. We do this when it comes to following the laws set by our country as well as our institutions.
Vanguard University, as we all know, has its own set of rules called the “contract.” This contract sets out a list of regulations, mostly banned activities, all students are expected to implement into their behavior. Yet, for some reason, not all of us do.
Not every Vanguard student comes from a Christian background, so it is understandable that some students choose not to follow the contract closely. Others choose not to follow because they believe they are above it, or they simply do not respect authority. No matter the reason, “breaking contract” happens more often than we may like to believe.
Does our following of Christ really affect our relationship with our school’s contract? For those who do consider themselves Christians, this conversation brings up an interesting concept. In Romans 13:1-2, Paul says:
“Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment.” (ESV)
So, if the Bible is clear, other questions immediately come to mind: why is it so difficult for “Christians” to follow the rules set out by our governing authority? What if the reason that we choose not to obey the rules within the contract is because we are distant from God and choose not to have an intimate relationship with Jesus?
When we allow ourselves to enter into a relationship with someone, platonic or romantic, we learn things about them, things they like, things they don’t like. Sometimes, we shift our likes and dislikes to fit theirs, especially if we are trying to impress them. Our relationship with Jesus is fairly similar. Therefore it makes sense that if we don’t have that relationship, we aren’t concerned with upholding the rules and regulations of the institutions that we are a part of. If our goal as Christians is to be more like Jesus, wouldn’t it make sense to follow the rules that He too followed?
God gave us free will, and He knew in doing so that not everyone would want a relationship with Him. He also understood that many of us, if not all, needed to learn what it meant to be a true disciple. This relationship carries over into everything that we do, including following the rules set out by Vanguard University. This is a crucial aspect of Christianity because Jesus asks specific things of us and when we don’t follow, our relationship with Him suffers.
Maybe it is a generational curse or maybe it is the fact that young adults have a natural rebellious instinct to defy authority, but either way, we are disobeying God when we break contract. When we find ourselves drifting from Jesus, we may find ourselves in situations that seem out of character. For example, the contract (that all Vanguard students are required to sign) specifically states that any student, under or of legal drinking age, should not consume alcohol while attending Vanguard. Some students may claim that this regulation has little to no standing as the Bible never states Christians should not drink alcohol, but it remains to be a rule that all Vanguard students have consented to follow.
Every single one of us has a choice: obey or disobey. Whatever our answer to this internal debate may be, our inclination to break contract or not reflects our relationship with Christ. So then comes the question, what is it for you?