I think it is funny how God ties everything together in my life, no matter where I am. Maybe funny is not the right word...maybe awesome should be there instead.
At home, my pastor---who has a beard now-which totally shocks me because I have NEVER seen him with facial hair in the 11 years I have known him--has been teaching on the difference between independence and freedom. In a nutshell, we don't want to be independent (not subject to another's authority) but we do want freedom (exemption from external control) in Christ.
Let's face it...at first those two words seem interchangeable. Don't argue with me, you know you have used them to mean the same thing in the past. I have. Our great nation fought for our independence from Great Britain so we could have freedom. Or we could say, our great nation fought for our freedom from Great Britain so we could be independent. See? It works.
But not when you are talking about God. We do not want to be independent from God. Why? Because we need Him. Life on our own (not subject to His authority) is a slippery slope that leads to pain and suffering and consequences we cannot imagine and definitely don't want to live through. He did not create us to live independent lives.
He did, however, create us to live our lives in freedom. Not freedom from all rules, rights or responsibilities, but freedom from the baggage of our sins chained to our wrists as we walk through life here on earth. And that freedom is so worth giving up our independence.
I left last Thursday to come to NC for basketball camp for Will (who, needless-to-say is asserting his independence at camp and loves having no parents around). :) We are staying with my sister. We attended her church on Sunday and the pastor spoke on the new covenant that God created with us, as believers, in the New Testament. This new covenant makes Jesus our High Priest (the one who intercedes for us) AND our King (ruler in our lives) and we have freedom because His precious blood covers over our sins so when God looks down on our hearts, He does not see the ugliness, but He sees Jesus.
That,my friends, is freedom.
So God took the lessons I have been learning for a month at home, knew exactly where I would be on Sunday, and continued to teach me all about what true freedom looks like. He is an amazing God!
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