The essence of life is a fight for ongoing true freedom. To fight to gain it, sustain it, maintain it, or in many instances in life - to regain the freedom you've surrendered or lost. The enemy relentlessly schemes on how to lure you into recklessly using your freedom to make choices that enslave you. To have you underestimate the addictive qualities of sin and to overestimate your ability to resist the temptation to sin (Hint: You don't resist temptation. You run from it!). Like a fish chasing fake bait, the enemy wants to hook you. To take the large ocean you freely & joyfully enjoyed and reduce your life down to being hooked on a line in an isolated area as he reels you in to your suffocated demise. You can surrender and become tomorrows chum OR you can come to your senses and go all in to fight to retake your freedom. But to do that you have to realize 3 truths about freedom: (1) Full freedom includes limitations, wise boundaries, & safe guardrails because freedom can be lost and surrendered. Many people think that full freedom means that you can do what you want, when you want and how you want. That's not freedom; that's recklessness! That's what I call "fool freedom" or "freedumb". That's exactly what the enemy wants you to think so you will make naive, foolish, and reckless decisions that will "hook you" to some sort of sin and forfeit your freedom. (2) Freedom isn't a destination. It's a PERSON. One of the most foolish thoughts you can ever buy into is that following God means you're going to be missing out on life and freedom. That only happens when you turn your relationship with God into a legalistic obligation. God didn't create freedom - HE IS FREEDOM. And His passion and heart's desire is for you to live in a constant state of freedom. He created you to be free. He calls you to be free. He died to set you free. If you're not free you are missing out... missing out on the essence of the fullness of life... missing out on the pleasure of not being controlled by your temptations, inclinations, and misguided passions... missing out on a life without regrets, a good conscience, a good night's sleep, an absence of worry, a daily celebration, your full potential, closeness to your Creator. Enslavements rob you of this and so much more. Jesus equals freedom. The closer you get to Him the more freedom you experience! (3) God has delegated your freedom into your hands. You can keep it, you can squander it, you can let it be stolen, and you can even take it back if you've given it up. God supplies you with the framework and capability to have full freedom whenever you're ready. But freedom isn't cheap. It will cost you. Like a vigilant soldier you will have to gain wisdom, discipline, and the fight of a warrior in order to avoid the things that rob you of your freedom - including your own inclinations, temptations, and blind spots (nativity). Freedom takes effort, but it's so worth the fight. Nothing compares to it. If you're lacking freedom don't blame God. You chose your way into captivity. And the great news is that you can choose your way out. Consider what God has to say about freedom in the verses below. Fight tooth and nail for the full freedom God has already gained for you!! FREEDOM!!!!!
STRiVE to THRiVE!
"It is for freedom that Christ has set us free." - Galatians 5:1
"So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed." - John 8:36
"Jesus said, 'If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” - John 8:31-32
"Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life." - John 14:6 (Jesus = Truth. Truth = Freedom. Jesus = Freedom)
"Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom." - 2 Corinthians 3:17
(There are a ton more versus about freedom and overcoming enslavement in the Bible. God wants you to be FREE and He has drawn you a road map.)