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Why Settle For Deliverance When You Can Be Free

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“Why settle for deliverance when you can be free?” – Christine Caine, IF Gathering

I love celebrating the 4th of July. I’m a patriot at heart and am (mostly) proud to be an American. Like any country we’ve got our issues, but I am grateful for the everyday freedoms I experience. In spite of our crazy American egos and weird extremists, (oh, and the stone-age use of the US customary measuring units), we have it pretty good here. I love celebrating the 4th of July because it reminds me of the beginning of our country. I believe that knowing where we came from will remind us of what’s important – our foundations – and help us get where we want to go.

In 1776 our founding fathers set out to declare independence from the British Empire by establishing a “resolution of independence,” which a few days later became the Declaration of Independence. Our founding fathers courageously delivered themselves out of the hands of King George III, and into a new divided and independent land, but they didn’t just stop there. Deliverance into these new colonies, and independence from Britain wasn’t enough – they sought the life their forefathers had set out to find in America and one they knew they were also meant to live – a life of freedom – and established that freedom 239 years ago. And here we are today, still with so many freedoms that many other nations don’t have.

 

Knowing where we came from will remind us of what’s important – our foundations – and help us get where we want to go.

 

Christine Caine told a similar story at IF:Gathering this year where she preached from Joshua 5 about the Israelites wandering through the desert, but this story took a slightly different turn. The Israelites were told to go to the promise land, a land of milk and honey, a land of freedom from slavery and from Pharaoh, yet it took them 40 years to make a 2-week trip. The imagery Chris laid out has really stuck with me, especially as I continue to meet women who seem to be repeating the cycle of those Israelites.

I keep meeting women who are stuck where they don’t want to be, but don’t care to move out of. Women of great faith who have been delivered from the chains of their past but not walking in freedom. They carry guilt and shame like a banner across their foreheads. Delivered, but not free. They walk in fear and anxiousness, not letting go of their chains because “what if…”. Delivered, but not free.

I don’t pity them. I sit across the table and empathize with them. I’ve been there too. I know what that’s like. In fact, I would venture to say that most of us have experienced moments or seasons like this in our stories. Yet, as we recognize this, we must remember it’s not the pursuit of happiness that we should pour ourselves into, for even freedom does not promise happiness. We ought to be pursuing Christ fully and recklessly, and experience abundant joy in the life He has laid out for us – the good, bad, and everything in between. But if God has laid out another life for us, a life of abundance and freedom in Christ, why are many still choosing to live in chains?

What’s it going to take for you to realize the life you are living is not an abundant life? At what point will you realize God has so much more in store for you if only you’d step out in faith and walk in freedom? Letting go of whatever is holding you back; letting your past stay in the past, letting the future stay in the future and focusing on today. What is causing you to live delivered but not free?

 

If God has laid out another life for us, a life of abundance and freedom in Christ, why are we choosing to live in our chains?

 

This 4th of July I am finally celebrating a life of freedom. Freedom from my past, and the anxiousness of my future. Freedom from my frustrating circumstances, busy life, and unmet expectations. Freedom from the shame. Freedom from the anger of injustices, and ultimately, freedom from any other chains I willingly place on myself everyday. I’m done with that kind of life you guys, aren’t you?

If you don’t live the life of freedom that God has designed for you, then who will? {tweet this}

To close, I’ll leave you with a modified thought from another article I wrote a while back. In regards to your freedom…

If it were up to me I would make the decision for you. I would pack you up and ship you off into the life that Christ died for and God is calling you to, but it’s not up to me; it’s up to you. Your abundant life in Christ is beckoning you – it is within your reach. Your idle posture proves you have convinced yourself another can take your place or that you are not worthy, but you are wrong. There is no one else who can take your place and Christ has made you worthy. {tweet this} But if you choose to remain there, watching your future – independent of those chains – fade to black, the world will never know you and you will have lived a life delivered, but not free. 

 

But if you choose to remain there, watching your future – independent of those chains – fade to black, the world will never know you and you will have lived a life delivered, but not free.

 

Make today a marked moment in your life. Make today the day you declare your independence from those chains that you’ve continued to carry. Decide today to live a life of freedom in Christ, casting all of your chains at His feet and embracing the abundance He has already promised you.

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

Happy Independence Day, let’s celebrate 🙂

Alongside you,
beth

 

 

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