We were created to be free. One of my favorite things about being a child of God is the freedom we have in Christ. Why has Christ set us free from sin and death? For the incredible and awesome status of “free”. Free to love beyond ourselves. Free to truly live and not just exist. We were on those slave blocks. Half-naked, humiliated, alone. Sin had us bought and mocked and tortured some more. Deep inside all of us is this yearning for freedom. Real freedom. Not the freedom from our own procuring, like sneaking out the house at night in search of exhilarating freedom, yet being burdened with guilt instead. Not like a runaway slave who is constantly looking over their shoulder in fear. Freedom in Christ is freedom FROM guilt and fear. It is living truly free. Free to be at peace with our life today and eternally.
My heart hurts when I see God’s children becoming slaves all over again to fear and guilt. The very reason our freedom was bought at such a cost was so we wouldn’t have to be burdened ever again. It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. Did you hear that? It’s like a slave being bought from the tortured life of slavery, being given every privilege of a free man, yet still beating themselves every night for old times’ sake. It’s a mockery of what Jesus has done for us on the cross. And it’s exactly where our enemy wants us to be. If we aren’t taking full advantage of our freedom in Christ, he wins. Because his tactics are to lure us into self-made cages of fear and guilt. As long as we’re in bondage again to fear, we are powerless. Scared stiff.
I’ve been really convicted about being unafraid of doing hard things. We all have hard things. Everyone’s story is different. We simply can not compare each other’s journeys. We’re all running the race, and it’s a good thing we’re not all the same pace. Just like running, though, the goal is not to quit. On our journey, we’ve had some hard stuff. Our hard has often revolved around health and money. In fact, last month, the two year anniversary of our hardest battle yet, came and went without me even thinking about it! I praise the Lord for a healthy marriage, despite unhealthy bodies. More recently, our hard has been the climbing out of the pit we’ve been diving in and out of for the past ten years. It’s because of the freedom we have in Christ we have been able to keep going.
Maybe Paul was a runner too, because he often referenced our life to a race. In a race, you’re exhausted, sometimes unsure of how to make the next step, and usually right about the time you feel like quitting, someone with a cup of cold water or a really encouraging word yelled in your direction puts a new strength to your legs and a renewed desire to finish well.
We all have stories. I actually made a short video about our journey so far. I call it ten years condensed into less than five minutes. Consider it a cup of cold water if perhaps you are going through a hard mile. We’re not there yet, but I can fully and earnestly say, thus far the Lord has helped us!