Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God.

1 Peter 2: 16

 

This statement brings to mind at least two possible responses. The first is that I already do that. I vote, express my political views, go to church as I choose, select my own friends, shop where and when I want, and basically don’t live under any particular compulsions. The second is that freedom is not something that I can even begin to imagine. I am held down by financial limitations, education, health, social status, where I live, and who my parents were. There are multiple factors that are out of my control that keep me constrained and confine the horizons of my life.

 

God tells us that both thought processes are flawed. You see, both focus on a type of image of freedom that has nothing to do with the heart of living free. One of the central purposes that Christ brought to His life among people was to define, demonstrate, and perfect access to real, God-centric freedom. Freedom means that I can escape the need to find my sense of worth in wealth, education, position, power, control, worldly success, fame, and dominance. Freedom says to my mind that I am not held down or back by who I know, where I live, what I do, my parentage, my bank account, my health, my past, and my fears. Freedom is the voice of the Spirit of Christ communicating with my heart in words that speak loudly of my potential and my worth. It is God, Himself, showing me what He wants me to do and why this matters to Him.

 

Freedom should be embraced and celebrated every day of the year and in every aspect of living. In Christ, every person has the ability to be totally free. Whether in a palace or a prison, living in a cardboard shack or on a mountaintop, and in the finest of physical condition or while drawing those last breaths of this life, all people can be bathed in the freedom that flows from God’s spring and that is Christ’s gift to all who will receive it. Christ sets us free, and God’s grace empowers us to live in the fullness of that freedom. So let’s determine to be free; to worship the giver of that freedom while praying to receive it more fully. As we open our hearts to freedom’s giver, we are made free to use it as an act of service to Christ.