The corner news stand in the former Soviet Union offered a small selection of government approved reading –sterile, gray, mediocre material. Contrast that with a news stand in New York City. There you’ll find vibrant color, confident opinions and massive creativity. But shelved alongside the beauty of free expression you will notice a darker shade of freedom on display.
Freedom is defined as the power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants without hindrance or restraint. Freedom is glorious and freedom is risky.
The children of Israel were miraculously freed from slavery in Egypt. No more whips. No more bricks. No more pyramids. Yet in their outer freedom, they chose the inner oppression of sin.
It can be harder to live free in the fullness of choice. In our independence we choose things that enslave us once again.
This is the paradox of freedom – that we have the option to choose bondage.
But God, in love and through Jesus, freed us from the bondage of sin to become servants of righteousness. (Romans 6:18)
Our most significant act of independence is choosing dependence on Christ, choosing his kingdom and his rule over the tyranny of a self-reliant life.
Our founding fathers realized that our truest freedom is found in humble reliance and utter dependence on God:
“We have this day restored the Sovereign to whom alone all men ought to be obedient. He reigns in Heaven, and with a propitious eye beholds his subjects assuming that freedom of thought, and dignity of self-direction which He bestowed on them. From the rising to the setting sun, may His kingdom come.” Samuel Adams
I have lived, Sir, a longtime, and the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth-that God Governs in the affairs of men. And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without his notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without his aid? We have been assured, Sir, in the sacred writings, that “except the Lord build the House they labor in vain that build it.” Benjamin Franklin
Celebrate your freedom by making a fresh commitment to dependence on Christ.