Freedom – In Christ


freedom1

 

So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.  John 8:36

 

Thinking about July 4th always brings up patriotic images, thoughts of freedom, and thoughts of summer fun. There’s nothing wrong with that, but sometimes I think we take our freedoms for granted, and perhaps, even abuse those freedoms.

In the fifth chapter of Galatians we find the Apostle Paul discussing freedom in Christ more thoroughly. God does not want us to be in any type of bondage, which is sin. That bondage can be worry, financial issues, addictions to drugs or alcohol, eating disorders, bad habits and other sin. But we are free to ask God to release us from what we find ourselves entangled in. It will take work, and prayer, but Christ can and will lead us to freedom.

Christ alone gives us all the freedom we need. We have the freedom to enjoy Him, and be free of enslavement to sin. Is there something that is weighing you down? Have you spoken to our Great God about how to free you from the captivity of sin?”

 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. Galatians 5:1

 

Blessings on your day.

 

 

 

Advertisements

Freedom From What Binds Us


Rope About to Break

My Bible Study Group is studying Daniel, authored by Beth Moore. I am so encouraged when I hear men and women of God show us more truth in a single verse. I love to see how to unpack old, familiar verses and apply those truths to our lives in a new fresh way.

I’ve been focused on Daniel 3:25.

He said, “Look! I see four men walking around in the fire, unbound and unharmed, and the fourth looks like a son of the gods.”’ 

Most of us are familiar with the story of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego being thrown into the furnace because they would not bow down and worship the statue of King Nebuchadnezzar.  I’ve read this story many times since I became a Christian. It’s a story we teach our children in church. But there is so much in this story; it applies to every step of the Christian life.

When our heroes were thrown into the fire, they were bound. The text tells us that when the King looked in the furnace the men were unbound, and when they came out of the furnace, nothing on them was burnt – just the ropes had been removed. A fourth man walked in the furnace with these men. Most scholars agree this man was the preincarnate Jesus. Jesus freed Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. He can free us too.

There are many things that bind us. Some have addictions, fears, doubts, or wavering faith. Remember that our Lord is stronger than all of those things.

What binds you? Jesus is more than willing to remove those ropes. There is freedom in Christ. He wants us to be free.

Galatians 5:1

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.

Blessings on your day.

Daniel, Lives of Integrity, Words of Prophecy,, by Beth Moore, Lifeway Publishing, Nashville, TN, 2006

Scripture: www.biblegateway.com

Image: google images.

10 Basic Blessings To Be Thankful For


thankful.024-001

I’m glad the calendar has changed to November. I love autumn, and Thanksgiving particularly. It’s not the meal that I love so much; it’s the idea of being thankful for what we have. As I type this post, I can think of dozens of things for which I am grateful.

Despite the bad news that comes to us on a daily basis, we have much to be thankful for. I ran across this article, and thought it was most relevant. I have included the link at the end of the post.

Many blessings on your day.

10 Basic Blessings You Should Be Thankful For

9:30AM EST 2/11/2013 J. LEE GRADY

Americans today face economic challenges, but we have nothing to complain about.

We Americans are a blessed people, but we are also spoiled. I know I am. I can get flustered over the stupidest things—like when my cellphone doesn’t get a good signal, when a flight is delayed or when my computer takes too long to load a website. Most people in the world don’t have iPhones, can’t afford air travel and don’t have computers. My impatience reveals my ungrateful spirit.

So how can we avoid this virus of selfish immaturity? Thankfulness is the antidote. It melts our pride and crushes our sense of entitlement. It reminds us that everything we have comes from God, and that His mercy is the only reason we are blessed.

I pray you will invite the Holy Spirit to convict you of any whining. Here’s a list of 10 blessings that many people in the world don’t have. Go over this list and then see if you still have anything to gripe about.

1. Got clean water? The next time you uncap a bottle of water or grab a drink from the tap, remember that one in eight people in the world (that’s 884 million people) lack access to clean water supplies. Millions of women around the world spend several hours a day collecting water. When you take a five-minute shower, you use more water than a typical person in a developing country uses in a whole day.

2. Do you have a bathroom? About 40 percent of the world’s population (2.6 billion people) do not have toilets. Lack of sanitation facilities spreads disease and is a major reason why more than 2 million people die annually of diarrhea.

3. How’s your electricity? The power in my house might be interrupted briefly three times a year because of Florida storms. But 1.6 billion people—a quarter of humanity—live without any electricity. And, because of unreliable infrastructure, at least 2 billion people on earth don’t have any light at night.

4. Got a roof over your head? One billion people live in slums. That’s almost one-sixth of the world’s population. Of this total, 640 million children live without adequate shelter; they live in cardboard boxes, tin-roofed shacks, one-room mud huts or filthy, crowded tenements. It’s been estimated that 1.4 billion people will live in slums by 2020. Meanwhile here in the United States, between 2.3 to 2.5 million people are classified as homeless.

5. Is there food on your table? In the United States we are battling an obesity epidemic. Yet according to UNICEF, 22,000 children die each day due to poverty. Approximately 790 million people in the developing world are chronically undernourished, and almost 28 percent of all children in developing countries are estimated to be underweight or stunted.

6. Got a stove? In developing countries, some 2.5 billion people use fuelwood, charcoal or animal dung to meet their energy needs for cooking. In sub-Saharan Africa, more than 80 percent of the population depends on these crude, traditional means for cooking, as do over half of the populations of India and China. The really sad part: Indoor air pollution resulting from the use of solid fuels claims the lives of 1.5 million people each year, more than half of them below the age of 5.

7. Got regular income? You may have had to take a pay cut during the recession. But keep in mind that at least 80 percent of humanity lives on less than $10 a day. The world’s average income is about $7,000 a year. Still, only about 19 percent of the world’s population lives in countries with per capita incomes at least this high.

8. Did you go to school? Nearly a billion people entered the 21st century unable to read a book or sign their names. Enrollment data shows that about 72 million children of primary school age in the developing world were not in school in 2005 (and 57 percent of them were girls).

9. Are you generally healthy? Americans face illness like people in other nations—and more than 12 million Americans are battling cancer in any given year. But many of us have access to health care. In the developing world, more than 2.2 million children die each year because they are not immunized. An estimated 40 million people in developing countries are living with HIV/AIDS. Every year there are 350–500 million cases of malaria, with 1 million fatalities, mostly in Africa.

10. Are you free to worship God? More than 400 Christians die for their faith every day around the world, and most of these believers suffer in Islamic countries—although the top hot spot for Christian persecution, according to Open Doors International, is the atheist regime of North Korea.

In these tough economic times you may feel the urge to complain. Be thankful instead! God calls us to live above this negativity. When we give thanks in all things, God gives us a supernatural attitude adjustment. When we thank God for all He has given us, acknowledging that we don’t deserve His goodness, our grumbling melts into gratitude and our impatience turns to praise.

J. Lee Grady is the former editor of Charisma. You can follow him on Twitter at leegrady. His most recent book is 10 Lies Men Believe (Charisma House).

http://www.charismamag.com/spirit/spiritual-growth/14683-10-basic-blessings-you-should-be-thankful-for

Why July 2 is really America’s Independence Day


declaration-of-independence-and-a-feather

Because it was on July 2, 1776, that the Second Continental Congress meeting in Philadelphia voted to approve a resolution for independence from Britain.

On that same day, the Pennsylvania Evening Post published this: “This day the Continental Congress declared the United Colonies Free and Independent States.”

So why do we celebrate July 4th as Independence Day?

We do because of a little thing called the Declaration of Independence.

The document was adopted by the Continental Congress on July 4th. The first draft of the declaration was written by Thomas Jefferson, who gave it to John Adams and Benjamin Franklin for editing. (You can read about it at the National Archives Web site.) Jefferson then took their version, refined it further and presented it to the Congress.

Scholars don’t even think the document was signed by delegates of the Continental Congress on July 4th.

The huge canvas painting by John Trumbull hanging in the grand Rotunda of the U.S. Capitol depicting the signing of the Declaration is, it turns out, a work of imagination. In his biography of John Adams, historian David McCullough wrote: “No such scene, with all the delegates present, ever occurred at Philadelphia.”

It is now believed that most of the delegates signed it on Aug. 2. That’s when the assistant to the secretary of Congress, Timothy Matlack, produced a clean copy.

John Hancock, who was the president of the Continental Congress, signed first, right in the middle of the area for signatures. The last delegate to sign, according to the National Archives, is believed to be Thomas McKean of Delaware, some time in 1777.

The city of Philadelphia, where the Declaration was signed, waited until July 8 to celebrate, with a parade and the firing of guns. The Continental Army under the leadership of George Washington didn’t learn about it until July 9.

As for the British government in London, well, it didn’t know that the United States had declared independence until Aug. 30.

By Valerie Strauss

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/answer-sheet/post/why-july-2-is-really-americas-independence-day/2012/07/02/gJQABsMHIW_blog.html