2017 July SGNScoops Magazine Rob Patz’ Publishers Point
Are you Free?
When I ask you that question, what do you really think?
“Of course I’m free,” I’m sure comes to mind.
I live in a country where freedom is celebrated, so of course, I’m free. That is true to a certain extent. We’re all free, but in reality, we cause our own restraint, our own lack of freedom.
I love the scripture in Galatians that reads, “For you have been called to live in freedom. Use your freedom to serve one another in love.” (Galatians 5:13 NLT)
Sometimes, we take freedom for granted – freedom of speech, freedom to travel, freedom to worship – and not until there is a point in life that freedom is taken away do we realize how much we should cherish it.
Recently, my mom fell and broke her femur bone in her leg. If you know my mom you know that her freedom to be able to do what she wants, when she wants, is one of the things she cherishes most. Unfortunately, during this period of recovery, she has not been able to have that freedom. So, the freedom she cherishes has been taken away and makes her desire for that freedom even greater. I want to thank each and every one of you for taking the time to pray for my mom. Her recovery is going amazingly well, with the doctors saying she is the perfect example of healing, and at some point, mom will regain her freedom that she has lost at this moment.
How many of us live our life in a way that we have closed ourselves in, taking away our own freedom, or whether through hurt or circumstances like our job, we’ve allowed our freedom to disappear? How many of us have allowed our freedom in Christ to disappear? That is probably the most worrisome of all.
I remember hearing my dad saying we are more than conquerors. Now, if we’re living a life that does not speak that, then we are missing out in the freedom that Christ has given us. He wants us to be bold, and if you look at the scriptures, when we are bold with the freedom that we have in Christ, we then can serve others in love.
How many times have you been at a point in your life where your own hurt, discouragement, feelings of regret, and depression have left you with walls that have become a trap to you and are not allowing you to live in the freedom that is through Christ Jesus? When you are in that position, you can’t help others.
I know personally there have been times in my life where I have been so caught up in the circumstances of my life that I was of no value to anyone else. I had built those walls of hurt, disappointment, and depression around me, and they had me trapped. They had become so harmful to me that I could not, or was not, able to help others. That’s what the Scripture is talking about, being bold enough in our faith to be able to have freedom from things in our life to share the joy of Christ.
Since I was a kid, every morning my father would say, “This is the day that the Lord hath made. I will rejoice and be glad in it.” If you begin to rejoice in your life no matter the circumstances, it will bring a new level of freedom.
Anyone will tell you that freedom is not free … there is a cost. If you serve, or have served, in the military and sacrificed time away from your family, I want to tell you how much I appreciate what you have done in service for your country.
Freedom as a Christian is similar to being in the military. We live a life where we have to decide whether we are going to serve Christ and lay aside our personal feelings and experiences to serve Him. Freedom in Christ doesn’t come for free. It comes at the price of obedience.
I challenge you this month, the month of freedom here in the United States, to live life to the fullest and live life with the freedom from Jesus that overtakes you and shines through you to those in your community.
I want to invite you to be with us in Vernon, Ala., at the Vernon Alabama Gospel Music Weekend from Sept. 8-9. I would also love to see you at the Creekside Gospel Music Convention in Pigeon Forge, Tenn., from Oct. 30 through Nov. 2 for four great days of Gospel Music with more than 50 fantastic artists.
Have a great month of freedom.
By Rob Patz
First published in July 2017 SGNScoops Magazine.
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