In the movie Bonnie and Clyde one scene depicts the couple at a hideout, not able to leave because the cops are on their trail. It has become obvious to them that this life of crime isn’t as glamorous as they had once imagined.
Bonnie Parker is dreaming of a new life somewhere, a clean life, a second chance where they could start over and live as other people do. She asks Clyde, “What would you do if some miracle occurred and we were able to walk out of here clean, with no record, and nobody after us? What would you do?"
Clyde Barrow thinks for a moment and says something along the lines of, “I guess I'd do things different. First, I wouldn't live in the same state where I pulled my bank jobs, and when I wanted to rob a bank, I'd go to another state..." Bonnie’s body language showed great disappointment. This isn't at all what she had in mind.
This is just how some people get confused about grace.
The Bible tells us that “There is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” (Romans 8:1)
This means that the slate is clean and we’re free to walk out the door and live a brand new life. But something about the old self prefers life on the run, and we sometimes find ourselves going back to that dreadful, painfully unglamorous existence.
We were saved from the muck, and yet, sometimes we can’t wait get to back in and much-it-up some more. This is the Clyde Barrow in each of us, that sinful creature who is always longing to return to the old way of life.
God sent His Son to set you free. He gives you a fresh start, a second chance so that you will never have to go back to a life on the run. God pours out his grace not so that you can be a better Clyde Barrow, but so that you can experience the dreams of a Bonnie Parker — the dreams of a new life, free from the chains of the past, free from guilt, free to live a second chance life.
Bonnie and Clyde were both criminals, both sinners, both condemned. This dramatized piece from their life story gives us some insight into ourselves. Our inner Clyde Barrow may want to use this freedom as an excuse to sin more, but God has given us this grace so that that the other-self inside us — the one with those Bonnie Parker dreams — can experience the full freedom of life in Christ.
It’s a question of whose dreams you will choose to follow today. You’ve been set free, pardoned, and released. You can walk out the door. How will you use your freedom?