Thursday, November 3, 2011

The Gift of Freedom

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 (Galatians 5:1).

Freedom !
Courtesy of Flickr: here

It's not a new gift. In fact, it's been mine our whole relationship. Funny thing, I'm only now beginning to understand it. 

That gift is freedom. Freedom in Christ, it's age old, but is it present tense in my life? 

Bondage. It's easy. 

Living in true freedom? That's equivalent to this girl receiving a Math Achievement Award. Spend some time with me and you will realize the gravity of the previous sentence. It's a big deal. To live in snare-releasing freedom, is to live an abundant life (John 10:10).

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

Indeed, Ladies and Gents, He has set us free. I'm not sure why that truth is so challenging to grasp, except that there is an enemy whose schemes depend a lot on Christians not living in freedom. Therefore, he has his reasons for keeping us snared, even by our own doing. 

To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, "If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples". Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free (John 8:31-32).

Struggling to live in freedom is greatly influenced by the lies we believe. Most times I'm oblivious to deception. Other times, I'm aware of the lies, but struggle to release myself from guilt or pride. When I spend time in God's Word, studying His very words and searching His truth, I taste freedom. The truth is sharp, cutting me right to the core of my bondage. 

Jesus did not die to redeem His people, only to watch us fall back into slavery. Did we miss the sunday school lessons on the Israelites. We're not the first to struggle with our "free" status.

But this girl is tired of bondage. I want abundance. 

The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly (John 10:10)

This is a "here's your sign moment": The "thief comes only to steal, kill, and destroy", but our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ came that we may have life "abundant". 

Don't be fooled. 


In His Name,


Lisa notes... said...

Isn't it strange how bondage is sometimes more comfortable to us than freedom? I want to live more in my freedom too. Christ died so we could live in it. Nice post, Jennifer.

Courtney said...

I'm literally blown away right now. Like jaw on my desk type blown away. The way God uses you to confirm things in my life sometimes...whew. It's overwhelming...

Yes, we've heard it before - there's such a difference between head knowledge and actually letting it penetrate your heart and CHANGE you (yes, FREE you!).

"But this girl is tired of bondage. I want abundance."

Did I mention to you that I'm going to get a tat drawn up tomorrow night that is none other than "abundant" in Greek, directly pulled from that verse?

In light of John 10:10, one commentary states:

Might have it more abundantly - Literally, that they may have abundance, or that which abounds. The word denotes that which is not absolutely essential to life, but which is superadded to make life happy. They shall not merely have life - simple, bare existence - but they shall have all those superadded things which are needful to make that life eminently blessed and happy. It would be vast mercy to keep men merely from annihilation or hell; but Jesus will give them eternal joy, peace, the society of the blessed, and all those exalted means of felicity which are prepared for them in the world of glory.

You inspire me.

Jennifer said...

Lisa, it's so strange to me. Yet, it's true. Stumps me! :) Thanks, Lisa, for making your way over here every week! It's noticed and appreciated!

Oh, Courtney. It makes me smile at the way God uses the two of us to sharpen each other. Prayin' freedom for us!

No, ma'am, you did not. I saw on facebook. Tisk Tisk. ;) I kid. That's beautiful. I love the what the commentary says about abundance! I believe!


Caroline said...

I love this: "It's not a new gift. In fact, it's been mine our whole relationship. Funny thing, I'm only now beginning to understand it." So many of His gifts are like that to me.

"Abundance" and "freedom" in the context of Christ are such beautiful words. Great post.

Jennifer said...

Thank you, Caroline! With each moment we understand, we're moving from "glory to glory"- It's great stuff!

Jadyn @ Dutch.British.Love said...

I love that simple line: It's for freedom that Christ has set us free. It's so much deeper and so much powerful than it looks at first glance. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on it, it was such a good reminder!!

Bonnie Gray said...

Living safe in our weaknesses is easier but God's freedom to step out IN and DESPITE our weaknesses - that is hard but the way more satisfying choice! Makes us close to Him! Thnx Jennifer!

Jennifer said...

Simple, but hard- isn't that the way it always is? Looking to quickly happens to be my problem most of the time! Thank you, Jadyn!

Bonnie, you are right! It's so rewarding. It only takes risking the hard for the abundance!

Jeri@GodsDreamsForMe said...

To freedom! Even more, to His grace filled, loving freedom!

Jennifer said...

*Cheers*, Jeri! :)

Lindsey V said...

Oh, the first verse in Galatians just totally stopped me in my tracks! What a powerful reminder!

{sigh} how I can only find it in Him...truly, truly a gift!

Jennifer said...

Amen, Lindsey! He's so willing to hand it to us, but most of the time we live in bondage instead. Thanks!

Mari-Anna Frangén Stålnacke said...

Great post, Jennifer! Go for abundance! Don't be fooled. Love it! Blessings!

Sarah said...

Jennifer, thanks for this sweet reminder. Oh the lies we believe! I've been so convicted of the lies in my heart recently, and I forget sometimes that there is freedom to be found on the other side. Thanks for sharing your heart in that!

Jennifer said...

Mari-Anna, thank you! Abundance or bondage. I pick abundance! Woohoo!

Oh, Sarah, I pray you find release from the lies and embrace the freedom you've been given! I pray that for all of us!

Shanda said...

Choosing abundance! We have so many freedoms that we just have to reach out and accept. Maybe it is fear of the unknown that keeps us from accepting all Christ gives.

Jennifer said...

Shanda, I think there is a lot of truth to that statement. I know I'm not a big fan of the unknown. Also, I believe we feel a level of fear in the "reaching out", an unworthiness. But it's our unworthiness that makes Grace so sweet!