08 Aug The Rhythm of Freedom
By Dr. Lisa C. Chavers
Freedom in the biblical sense means a practical separation from sin and a real connection between our heart and the truth found in the Word of God. Only the power of God’s Word can set us and keep us free from bad habits that hinder us. The power of God opens our eyes to see what is right and opens our hearts to recognize and desire those things. He empowers us to say “yes” to right choices and “no” to wrong choices. Little by little, freedom in God delivers believers from the dark traps of depression, fear, low self-esteem, discontentment, jealousy, pride, bitterness, and more.
The rhythm of personal and social freedom is peaceful, captivating, and enjoyable! I love and appreciate the ability to consider, but not become enslaved to, the opinions of others. God designed me to be myself, not a carbon copy of another person. I am not a replica, rather, I am an original in personality, mindset, gifts, talents, abilities, strengths, and weaknesses. I am beloved, accepted, and valued when I think, behave, interact, speak like, and reflect my true self.
When the Spirit of God guides our freedom, it leads to His love, peace, joy, creativity, unity, fruitfulness, and fun! However, the Word of God also cautions us in 1 Corinthians 6:12 and 10:23 that all things are lawful, but, not all things are beneficial, helpful, morally proper, or practical.
We cannot freely do or say anything that we want when we identify with the standard of Christ. Such a liberal indulgence of “freedom” is dangerous to others and ourselves. Our fleshly human nature has no idea how to properly handle the God-honoring type of freedom. Ironically, flesh-flavored freedom often leads to bondage, lack, sorrow, a spirit of heaviness, harm to others, enslavement to people and things, addiction, and even death. It can cause us to wander down wrong paths, violating, disrespecting, and disregarding others along the way.
God’s freedom has boundaries, which act like invisible borders or lines that remind us to “go this far, but no further.” Everyone needs a line that cannot be crossed. Boundaries create trust, order, hope, and help to build healthy relationships. Boundaries allow us to experience true liberty. Godly people are to do all things to the glory of God, and liberty is dishonoring to God and others if we disregard its limitations. Authors Ginger and Caspar Walsh state that, “a life without boundaries is a life out of control.” At times, boundaries on how we view time, behavior, and personal pursuits may seem confining, but they actually guide us toward the freedom we really covet.
If freedom did not exist, there would be no need for boundaries (gates, fences, rules, etc.). By the grace of God, we manage our attitudes, feelings, choices, and conduct. Romans 14:12 reminds us that each of us will give an account of ourselves to God. We are accountable to God for the way that we use our freedom.
I enjoy the creative liberty to love, worship, and praise God! I love making ministry, career, travel, and even relational decisions that benefit me and bring no harm to others. I realize the value of weighing key factors before making significant choices. Again, I understand that I may be free to do several things, but, all things are not advantageous.
Biblical freedom adds fun, flavor, and freshness to every aspect of my journey! How do you realize, experience, and celebrate His gift of freedom in your journey? Endeavor to enjoy the rhythm of His phenomenal freedom throughout your life and choose to use your freedom!