23 Jan 2020

How Do You Spell Freedom?

Earlier this week the nation celebrated Martin Luther King Day. A day that has been set aside for us to focus on social justice, equality, and freedom for all people. Martin Luther King, Jr. dedicated and ultimately lost his life as he gave his blood, sweat, and tears to establish the civil rights movement that still remains even as it has evolved to incorporate many other facets. Regardless of whether you chose to attend a program or event to celebrate the life and legacy of MLK, watched a documentary, read a book, or just enjoyed the day off work or school, I hope at the very least you contemplated what freedom means to you.

Several days prior to MLK day, I had the privilege of seeing the movie “Harriet” at one the few theatres that were still showing it. Isn’t it baffling that many of the movies that have positive impact and are intellectually stimulating have the shortest durations in the theatres? Well I’ll leave that alone because I guess part of the reason is based on viewer demand and support. Think about it!!! I had been told by everyone who saw the movie that it is a “must see”, and after seeing it for myself I wholeheartedly agree. It was captivating, stimulating, and created in me a great deal of soul stirring and soul searching. Harriet Tubman, Martin Luther King, Jr. and many others risked their lives for justice and freedom for others. Freedom and a better quality of life was not just priority for them, but they gave their all to bring others into a new way of life. A way of life that is available for everyone to enjoy and benefit from. The question surfaces (or at least it should), are we maximizing the privileges that our great forefathers have made possible for us. If you know anything about the history of slavery, you know that it was horrific to endure. Even in the best of situations (if you can even use that term), men, women, and children, were treated as objects of convenience, certainly not human beings created equal.

It is very clear to me that I have an obligation to live out the privilege of my freedom to the fullest! That means to become all that I was created to be not just for my success, but to leave a legacy for my children, and grandchildren, and to be an influencer to everyone I come in contact with. As a follower of Christ, He gives credence in His word which enables my liberty. However, to be an achiever, I am required to not just read the word, it must become my intentional lifestyle.

St. John 8: 32 (NLT) “And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free”.

Each one of us was created (born) in the truth of who God purposed us to be. As we attempt to navigate through life’s experiences, the truth often pales in the shadows of negativity. Unfortunately, we begin to succumb to the lies of life!

St. John 8: 36 (NLT) “So if the Son sets you free, you are truly free”.

When you truly know who set you free, you will be able to stand on that freedom, and walk it out even when obstacles try to paralyze you.

James 1: 24 (AMP) “But he who looks carefully into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and faithfully abides by it, not having become a [careless] listener who forgets but an active doer [who obeys], he will be blessed and favored by God in what he does [in his life of obedience].

The disciple James is described as a bondservant or slave of God. God is the ONLY one we are ever to be enslaved to! Why . . . because God enslaves us not to use us to our detriment and demise, but to our unlimited blessings to eternally reign with Him! But there are stipulations to the slave/servant relationship. It is our requirement to know and remember the law (God’s word), live by it, act on it; and then because of our obedience we are assured of His blessings and favor.

Galatians 5: 1 (AMP) “It was for this freedom that Christ set us free [completely liberating us]; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery [which you once removed].

Every one of us has been “freed” from the bondage of slavery. Freed from addictions, freed from low self-esteem, freed from relational entanglements, freed from financial bondage and lack; freed from unhealthy habits, etc. Yet, just like many who lived during the time when the 13th amendment abolished in 1865, they chose to remain, (and far too often returned to) what they deemed as their comfort zone, rather than walk in the newness of life known as FREEDOM! Your freedom has been established by your Father and can never be revoked. How are you living out this precious gift that you did not even have to ask for, it was paid for by your Creator?

Source: First Lady Denise