Our One Guaranteed Freedom

July 4, 2020
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1 Peter 2:16a – Live as free people. (NIV 2011)

As our pandemic lingers, people naturally yearn for former freedoms — including public worship. Mixed feelings abound over such matters. Restless tension grows between restraints and freedoms. As in any polarized situation, we can easily find ourselves sucked into the spiraling vortex of emotional reactivity. Be careful, for that's bondage in itself! It's a lockdown of our minds. It robs our thoughts of a better freedom: our one guaranteed freedom unique to God's children. It's God-given, so no one can rob us of it — if indeed we've been set free by the Son!

John 8:36 – So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. (NIV 2011)

Romans 8:2 – Through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death. (NIV 2011)

Ephesians 3:12 – In him and through faith in him we may approach God with freedom and confidence. (NIV 2011)

Did you notice here two sides of Christ's freedom? There's freedom from something and freedom for something. Of course, no constitutional right can provide or guarantee either. Only God can!

The thrilling wonder of this freedom reminds me of a yearly springtime event on our family farm: Liberation Day for our cows. This was their freedom from confining stalls, their freedom to roam expansive pastures. As always, their behaviour was predictable: The instant their nostrils sensed the spring air, the animals broke into exuberant sprints and leaps. They became wildly intoxicated with freedom and fresh air.

Such vivid emotional responses seem over the top for Christians. But why? For we're granted a far grander freedom. Perhaps we've never experienced Christ's freedom, or we've lost its value, or we've become dependant on lesser freedoms — including our religious freedoms.

Here's a question: Would it not be within God's nature to use COVID-19 for our benefit — to expose our hearts? We must face ourselves, asking, "Which freedom grips my thoughts most, through these trials? Is this making me more Christ-centered or more self-absorbed? Am I growing more in the fruits of the Spirit or in the fruits of pride and discontent? How responsible am I with my God-given freedom — to live in it fully and to guard it from the suffocating bondage of fruitless longings?"

Galatians 5:13a – You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh. (NIV 2011)

1 Peter 2:16 – Live as free people, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as God's slaves. (NIV 2011)

My friends, in these days, you and I must each decide which freedom matters most, because that's the freedom that we will pursue above all others.

Prayer: Lord, work within our hearts to demolish our idolatrous dependencies on lesser freedoms, that we may freely love and serve You as Your fully liberated servants. Amen.


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About the author:

Diane Eaton <d.eaton@bmts.com>
Paisley, Ontario, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Amen, Diane


    Enjoy! Thank you so much.


    Thank you, Diane. This is reassuring.


    Thanks for your contributions to the devotions.


    Thanks. Wise words; a timely reminder…. and hard to live by!
    Blessings.


    You Are wise!!
    Thank you,
    I am being very careful in the age of COVID 19.


    Thanks for this. I laughed when you mentioned the cows. That’s exactly what they do! Lots of food for thought here. I’m forwarding your piece to several friends so we can use it as a discussion piece. You are a blessing.


    Good evening Diane,
    Thank you so much for this meditation. My son in the States is very concerned about the way people are demanding their freedom. I greatly appreciate your thoughts on this matter and will share your thoughts with him.


    Yes, Diane, and may we all accept the free gift of God’s freedom for us to be Jesus’ brothers and sisters in his loving family, people who keep their doors open to spread the word of Jesus sacrifice for all who will appreciate our freely-given residence in heaven.
    Thank you for the gift of your devotional.


    Diane,
    What a beautiful reminder of our ULTIMATE freedom and Love from above! Thank you for your devotional message.
    May we rejoice in God’s provision, as He draws us closer, and pray for those lost souls longing for worldly freedoms.
    Stay safe and well!


    Greetings Diane,
    Thank you for the good words.It is interesting the effect this “covid” experience is having on lives and will be interesting what attitude changes will occur once we are thru it. May we all be more appreciative and attentive to the Lord’s direction in our lives.
    Blessings for your writings.
    (B.C.)


    I think God is using the pandemic to reshape our lives and our world that we may yet experience true freedom. But we will still face choices: cling to the old or embrace the new.


    Thank you, Diane, for the devotional, for all of it, all the way to the last phrase of freedom in Christ.

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