Friday, July 5, 2013

Happy 4th of July: What It Means To Be Free

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On the Fourth of July, America is celebrating her freedom. It is a very exciting day in the middle of the summer where we can gather with family, cookout good food and watch fireworks. I love this tiny national holiday.

However, even though we have reaped the benefits for over 200 years, there were still people to lived and died so that we can be free. We tend to think about the men and women that died for our country recently, loved ones perhaps, and that is important. But there is also a rich history to this nation full of honor, sacrifice and love.

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There was another great event that shaped the world that happened over 2000 years ago. Another tale of honor, sacrifice and love. And another cause for freedom. Any guesses?

John 8:32 -- "And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free."

Jesus Christ lived and died on the cross so that we can be free. Just as we are celebrating our nations freedom, we can celebrate the freedom that Christ grants us through his sacrifice. With Christ in your heart, you know the truth. The truth of love, sacrifice and freedom. You are no long bound on a one way journey toward the enemy; instead, you are covered with the blood of the one sent to save you.

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Galatians 5:13 -- "For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters. But don’t use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love."

Jesus freed us from bondage not to be selfish, but to be kind. Our human nature is to always want more and to get as much of it as we can no matter the cost. However, that is not the life that Christ wants for us, it is not a life that benefits anyone, including ourselves in the long run. Christ wants us to share our freedom and reflect His love. He wants us to reach out to those still living in the bondage of the world and allow Jesus to save them as well. 

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Yesterday was a day that our nation came together to celebrate our freedom. Christians can join together and celebrate their freedom too. It is a beautiful thing to see the way freedom can work -- it can turn selfish and rude; however, it can also bound together so strong that nothing would break it. The strength of the bond is up to us and how much we much focus on Christ to guard and guide us along the way.

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I hope you all had a great Fourth of July and continue to have a great weekend. I pray for safety as lots of people travel on this weekend and I pray for unity among nations, communities, and families. I pray for all the men and women who have sacrificed so much, even their lives, to protect our nation. To all those who have served or who are serving, thank you! I pray that we take a moment in the midst of the excitement to also thank God for our freedom and His sacrifice.

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Happy Fourth of July! God Bless!

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