What do you, a 13th century Scottish warrior and repetitive, thunderous, sparkling booms have in common? They scream the sounds of freedom. I am probably showing my age with the Braveheart reference; nevertheless, later this week we will celebrate our freedom and independence as an American nation. It is only fitting for us to spend some time in reflection, considering what this freedom means for each of us. Men and women, past and present, have made the ultimate sacrifice for the freedom that we continue to enjoy. We cherish the freedom that we have and pray that we may always enjoy our liberties as American citizens.
But we also must push further and more deeply consider true freedom. The freedom that comes to us by way of the price that Christ paid for us, giving up his divinity to live a mortal life only to be killed (and resurrected) as a way for us to experience a deeper relationship with God.
Freedom is defined as one’s power or right to act, speak, or think as he or she wants, without hindrance or restraint. But that is not the freedom that we experience in Christ. The freedom that we experience in Christ comes only through us acting as Jesus did and being or becoming willing to give our life for the sake of Christ’s work in this world. Freedom is not the opportunity to do any and everything that we want, act, think or choose just simply because we are free to do so.
Grace was not given to us to act in any way in which we desire. The freedom that we experience through the grace of God is a freedom that compels us to act in accordance with Christ’s example so that we can further God’s work, mission, and ministry in this world. Freedom, outside of Christ’s freedom, is just disguised captivity to sin. But when we live and walk in the example of Christ then we become truly free because our mind is not set on things that are limited by this world, but instead on things that are understood only fully in the vastness of eternity.