photo credit- josephpetepickle
"But what is the nature of our freedom? It is not release from all constraint. It is not license to indulge our sinful nature. Our freedom is the freedom to "serve one another in love." It is possible to do so, because the Holy Spirit enables us to act in ways that are contrary to that natural impulses of sinful nature. Walking by the Spirit, we are released from the old master that produces hatred, jealousy, fits of rage, envy, and such. We are released to be loving, patient, kind, faithful, and good."-Lawrence O. RichardsIn our culture how often do we categorize freedom as a "run away" or "do what we want, when we want" type of thing? I cannot love God and the world; I cannot run freely if I'm hanging on to the things of this life. The Truth is that Christ died for us so that we can rid ourselves of the sin that enslaves us. It is the truth that sets us free!
"Let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us." Hebrews 12:1Below is a list of the things I have decided to throw off. I am letting you know so you can keep me accountable. I want this blog to be a place of vulnerability and honesty. Call me out. Disucuss. Encourage. Commune. Pray.
1-The burden of carrying life myself. I am a control freak! I tend to run a busy life not including Christ at times. I notice when I have days like this I am more scatterbrained, irritated, I get nothing accomplished for the day, and I eat poorly. The Lord is my strength.
2-Bitterness. I realize that I am going to have to live with the consequences of others sin no matter what...but I could choose to live with it in bitterness or in the freedom of forgiveness. Forgiveness really has nothing to do with the other person's behavior. I don't really forgive them for their sake, but for my own. It's between me and God.
3-Anxiety and Fretting. When I worry about things I realize that it is usually a determination to get my own way. Christ never worried or was anxious in any way because he was not focused on his own ideas, he was out to realize God's ideas. Paul says in Phillippians 4 that we should pray and ask with thanksgiving- then the peace of God will follow. Being grateful about my life changes the focus to HIM and not me which amazingly makes it easier to not worry about life.
4-Discouragement. Freedom is not seeking approval from others, but doing everything for God's glory and not mine. Like I talked about before; people pleasing is definately not from God. I am learning what true fellowship with people looks like.
I feel that doing this is so important in order to see what God has planned for my life. It will take time and I will struggle, but if I struggle in God's way then I know the result will be peace. I need something to remind me of this freedom that is always there for me....humm...perhaps a tattoo....I dunno. :)
"True freedom exists only where the Holy Spirit works in a man, becoming the principle of his life, and where man does not block his working." - J. Blunck