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Freedom (a Timeless Truths blog post)

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How many of you would like to be free just about now? With all the regulations in place it seems that rebellion against authority is a given (regardless of whether or not that rebellion is actually carried out). We were not meant to live under the tyranny of rules and regulations that cause us to forfeit our freedom. We were not meant to live without a means to express ourselves in an appropriate way … that’s why so many people have fought for so long and for so hard so that we could enjoy the freedom that is meant to be ours. Did you know that Jesus was one of those people? Did you know that Jesus came to set you and me free? For too long religious leaders would have you believe otherwise. For too long people have been led to believe they had to follow a long list of do’s and don’ts in order to receive favor with God … but that’s not true. The truth is found in scripture. The truth says in Galatians 2:15,16 (NIV) “We … know that a person is not justified by the works of the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ. So we, too, have put our faith in Christ Jesus that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by the works of the law, because by the works of the law no one will be justified.” This is good news for you and for me. It means we don’t have to be perfect. It means we can choose to trust in Jesus’ perfection that is credited to us on our behalf when we accept his free gift of salvation. It means we can enjoy freedom in a personal relationship with God knowing, by faith, He accepts us, approves us, and loves us unconditionally … all because of what Jesus did for each and every one of us when he died on the cross to pay the penalty for our sins and to justify us before God as we put our faith and trust in him alone to make us righteousness. Galatians 5:1 (NIV) is also an encouragement to us as it says, “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.” Of course this doesn’t mean we should just go out and commit every kind of sin imaginable though because we’re trusting in Jesus. No, on the contrary, because of what Jesus has already done for us we should have an attitude of gratitude … and that gratitude should motivate us to want to live in a way that is honoring to him. So, as you ponder the timeless truth of the freedom Christ has already made available to you, check yourself to see if you’re actually living in that freedom. See if you are trusting in Jesus alone to make you right with God. And don’t be afraid to exercise that freedom as you allow the Holy Spirit to lead you and guide you in how you live your life because the Holy Spirit will never lead you in a way that is contrary to scripture and to honoring God. Be thankful, therefore, for the freedom you can enjoy today … no matter where you live … for John 8:31, 32 (NIV) says, “ … 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.” Also, 2 Corinthians 3:17 (NIV) tells us, “ … where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.”

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The Making of My Journey With God

Everything we go through in life involves a process. For me, just to begin the process of writing my first book took a while as there were many things I needed to work through before I could actually jot down the first word.

I had to be spiritually mature enough to really and truly know (by experience) the truth of what I was saying – that way, I could write out of heart knowledge (not merely head knowledge) since I’d actually experienced what I wrote about first-hand.

In addition, once I was finally ready to write, I had to learn and apply the lessons God taught me about freedom, boundaries, responsibility, and thinking correctly.

In His mercy, when I was at the beginning stages of writing my very first book (My Journey With God) God gave me a revelation. I hadn’t known how God wanted me to do it – how He wanted me to put it together (like all the details about whether to put it in poems or some other format).

Then, I thought of my writing (of building a book) comparable to building a cake. I thought of the round yellow cake plate I had that I’d put a round cake on and the cover that went over it. I thought that the boundaries I had to work within were the parameters – whatever cake I made had to be the size that would fit within the round yellow cake plate (so it would have to be round and fit in there). Then, the height of the cake could only be so tall as it would have to fit under the cover that went with the cake plate (that was another parameter/boundary that I’d have to stay within). But, after that I had freedom.

I had freedom to choose what flavor cake I could make. The only parameter there was that it had to be sweet (not bitter). But it was my choice of flavor and I could choose the frosting and the decorations of how I wanted the outside of the cake to look (assuming I should make it look good also so it would be appealing to whoever was going to eat it).

So, I had the freedom to be myself and express myself (and even be unique as I created and built the cake and how it all looked and all came together – basically for others to enjoy – and all using my freedom responsibly – staying within certain parameters and certain guidelines.)

As I came to realize, it was like God showed me how my building a book was like the example of building a cake. I had to stay within certain parameters and guidelines as I built the book. I had to physically have the book fit within the borders guidelines of the printing company I was using (for margins, page size, book size, page count, submission requirements, etc.) however, within those borders I could be free to create and free to choose and free to be myself in whatever I created – all within the borders and parameters that God had given to me, personally.

For example, the inside of the book (like the inside of the cake) must be sweet (not bitter) – it must say words that honored God. So, in my freedom to choose the content of what I wrote (the words), my parameter/boundaries were that the words must honor God – but it was like God let me know He trusted me to do so.

I felt so humbled and even cried at the thought that He actually trusted me to make the actual decisions about what to put in the book (for words especially). It’s like He gave me the sense that He was letting me choose – like I could choose the flavor … and there was no wrong flavor.

I realized that I didn’t need to ask Him every two seconds if I should write this or that – or if I should make it as poetry or whatever – I didn’t have to ask Him all the details and didn’t have to have it all figured out ahead of time – it was sort of like all I needed to do was just start writing and trust that the Holy Spirit would continue to lead me and guide me in the decisions that I made (by me having a sense that it was “right”). So, really, it was going to have to be by faith – something not tangible – believing in something I couldn’t see, feel, taste, or touch – believing in that – above believing in the fear that I was doing something “wrong”.

So, I needed to think of building my book like building a cake. I sort of needed to pretend I was a humble child creating the book for my Abba Father – to honor Him, to show Him to be sweet to the world (not bitter) – to sort of be His ambassador to make the cake/book appeal to whomever God (by His Holy Spirit) wanted to draw towards Himself to “eat of it”. And I had to do all of that in a way that expressed myself in who God had created me, personally, to be – so I could spread His light through the cracks and flaws of my “under-construction” life – as the world needed the exact amount and type of light that I, personally, reflected as I allowed myself the freedom to be “me” – the unique person God Himself had created me to be – for His glory.

So, as I continued to go through the process of learning these lessons, I courageously chose to share the stories you will find as you read My Journey With God – a memoir of my life that highlights the various ways God has shown His love to me, personally, in my relationship with Him.

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