What do you think of when you hear the word freedom?
On a recent trip, my husband and I saw numerous signs along highways and on large and small businesses proclaiming this simple message: “Freedom Is Not Free.” As a military family (my husband and brother are retired Air Force and my dad served as a Marine in the Korean War) it was touching to see so many reminders not to take freedom for granted.
Since returning home, I have continued to think and pray about the costliness of freedom. It has been disheartening to watch the nightly news reports of political upheaval around the globe–lives shattered by the greed, hatred and arrogance of others–but I have come to see an ironic twist:While it is true that freedom is not free, it is also true that freedom cannot be bought, legislated or bartered for. Diplomacy is not the answer to securing True Freedom.
Manmade freedom on this earth will remain costly and will continue to be (at best) tenuous because of sinful hearts. We find affirmation of this in the wisdom of Scripture:What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures. James 4:1-3
By nature, our motives are impure because of the sinful war that wages within our hearts–so a manmade freedom can never last. Yet we find hope in the words of Christ Jesus:“If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” John 8:31,32 “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” John 14:6
As I have thought and prayed about the costliness of freedom I have come to the following conclusions:
- True Freedom is a God-thing. God sent His Son to be a living sacrifice–holy and pleasing to Himself–to free us from sins bondage so that we may worship Him into Eternity.
- True Freedom is an impossibility apart from Christ. Man’s arrogance in parting himself from God as his Creator resulted in the twentieth-century being recorded as the bloodiest of all time.
- True Freedom has no room for fear or doubt. We cannot retain True Freedom when fear or doubt rule our hearts.
- True Freedom has little to do with our circumstances and everything to do with faith in the Gospel of Christ.
- True Freedom is manifested when we love God above all (surrendering ourselves to His Sovereign Goodness) and prayerfully remember our brothers and sisters around the globe
Did you know that over one-hundred million followers of Christ suffer persecution and even death? Watch this and be blessed by their example:
Now . . . what do you think of when you hear the word freedom?“It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm then and do not let yourselves be burdened by a yoke of slavery.” Galatians 5:1
All to His Glory!