July 4 is known as Independence Day.

I got to thinking that independence as severe limitations.

On the one hand independence is good.  We want our children to not be tied to our apron strings, especially when they are over 40!  Adolescence is the time when it is normal for all of us form separate identities from those of our parents.  But, according to developmental psychologists, the stage of becoming independent is followed by the stage of learning to be interdependent—with one life partner and with the people around you.

Not only that, but Jesus summarized the whole law by saying that we should love God with all our heart and soul and mind and strength.  He didn’t say that about our neighbor—only that we should love them as ourselves.  With God, however, it seems to be total dependence in terms of the basic direction and tone of our lives that Jesus was promoting.  I’m sure the disciples didn’t ask permission to go to the washroom.  It’s not dependence in that sense.  Rather it was a spiritual dependence which was promoted with imagery like Jesus living in our hearts or the Holy Spirit guiding us.

It was after all the downfall of Adam and Eve that led to their losing their wonderful life in the garden. 

Independence has limitations.