I see the relationship between the Lord and us as growing, as starting the moment we accept him. As a father does a son. Even Moses continued to have a relationship with God after mistakes he did, God smoke to him "face to face" as one does a friend as the bible puts it. And the way they were forgiven were through sacrifices, Jesus was our sacrifice and as such as long as we are repentful with a "broken spirit and a contrite heart" (Psalm 51:17) then we are forgiven.
As for free will in the bible... I understand it as this...
We are pretty much on the same page. And since God knows the outcome, and God presents the choices in your life to make, by the choices you face, directs your life. He who controls the choices, controls the outcome. You may choose, knife or gun, how do you wish to die.
ME>>>>"And to my perception, like the rich young ruler, you are trying to do too much yourself. You are trying to force maturity, rather than allow God to do His job.
I don't mean that critically, just sayin'. Scripture says it's his spirit that will keep you from sinning, gal 5:16, not you carrying your cross. And it also says HIS SEED keeps you from sinning 1 john 3:9. It's not about man's accomplishment. That's why its so daunting, man wants to be in control, but it's about giving up control. Blessed are the poor in spirit. Rich young ruler had a mighty and successful spirit, Christ asked him to kill it and take a dependent, needy, slave like, servant like submissive spirit that depended on Christ for all."
On what I just quoted from you, I think you are right, I am trying to force maturity instead of letting him take total control. Thank you for these words.
That was observational, not judgemental. It was my view not an accusation of how wrong you are.