4 February 2014
I was talking with a few colleagues today about the different sports we were interested in. One of them loved skiing, another ice skating, yet another exclaimed how amazing it was to go sky diving. If it counts as a sport, i love driving!
Skiiing, sky-diving, para-gliding, driving, running, scuba-diving, travelling and sight-seeing – all give the thrill of freedom, the rush of adrenaline and the joy of being in a boundless state of play.
The opposite is true that we fear the loss of freedom. Which is why prison is seen as a grave punishment for anyone. But there are also many other forms in which we lose our freedom. They can range from emotional bondage to the past, anxiety about the future, fear, addictions, eating disorders or unhealthy eating restrictions imposed on ourselves, and of course one of the most evil forms existing more treacherous than ever, human slavery through human trafficking.
Jesus came to set us free. At the very beginning and before He started His ministry, Jesus declared as he read out scripture in a synagogue:
“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”
The bible is full of different examples of “freedom” and i believe that we first need to recognize that we are ourselves easily enslaved in various forms. If that is indeed the case we cannot “free” ourselves on our own strength. We need to give Jesus complete and unconditional control over our situation to free ourselves. If i were to be honest, freedom in Christ does not usually come instantly and it takes time in many cases. Scripture talks about the renewing of our minds – as if to remind us of the constant need to be actively seeking God to renew our ways of thinking. Scripture also talks about walking in the Spirit to avoid being controlled by our flesh. Indeed, i believe this freedom in Christ is meant to be experienced increasingly over the course of our lives rather than in an instantaneous flick of a switch. Paul talks about running and finishing the race and fighting the good fight. So i believe we are to do the same in regard to our freedom.
We are entitled to this freedom when we put our faith in Christ. And Scripture also says that He who began a good thing in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
Remember also that until the day of Christ Jesus, we continue to be subject to the attacks and schemes of the enemy, who we are told in Scripture, prowls around like a lion waiting to devour. But nevertheless, Christ has overcome and disarmed the evil one who is powerless when we learn to exercise our discipline in Christ.
Father Lord, thank you that you came to set me free, thank you that you came to disarm the enemy so that he has no control over me any longer. Remind me in your Spirit to exercise the authority and discipline of Christ so that freedom in all areas continues to grow and bear fruit in my life.