Sunday, August 30, 2009

Free Indeed!

In the 1964 movie "Lady in a Cage," Olivia DeHavilland plays a handicapped woman being held prisoner in a cage hoisted high off the ground, like an oversized bird cage. It's hard not to cheer out loud when her captors meet a violent end as her overwhelming desire for freedom drives her to unthinkable lengths to gain her release. God never intended for us to be caged. He put an ache for freedom in our hearts, and yet because of our first-parents, Adam and Eve, we were born in captivity. From conception we were in the grip of a master we had no strength to overcome on our own. We were locked up, locked in, locked out--we were prisoners to a brutish thug who possesses no mercy--we were slaves to sin.
"Jesus replied, 'I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave to sin.'" John 8:34 NIV
Like the Lady in the Cage, we were immobilized by our brokenness and confined to a life of constant dying. We were compelled to miss every mark we aimed for, except the targets of favorite sins we sought and not-so-favorite sins we fell into because we were bent that way. UNLIKE the Lady in the Cage, we were not left to try to save ourselves. An invincible Rescuer was sent to deliver us--none other than the very Son of the same God who wove freedom-love into every fiber of our beings. He designed the need into us and then sent the Answer to our need. Our Hero, Jesus Christ, bought our FREEDOM with blood too precious for utterance.
"So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed." John 8:36 NIV
Free indeed. Why don't more of us act like we're free? Why is it that even believers who have been set free, sometimes walk back into unlocked cages and settle back in there as though our sin-cage is our home? Why don't we get as far away from those ugly cages as we can and refuse to go back in? Maybe it is because the earth we're made of muddies our thinking and sucks at us like quicksand. Maybe the dirt in our bones resonates with the earth-ishness of our life on this travailing planet. But . . . Jesus said, "free indeed." FREE INDEED! The door is OPEN! I can LEAVE the cage! I MUST leave the cage! Father, help us to walk out of the cage of our own sin. Help us to walk in the freedom You wrote on our hearts. Release us from every divided thought that draws us earthward. Help us to live fully free and free indeed.
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If you have never met Jesus, or accepted His gift of freedom, His invitation is extended personally to you as you read these words. May I humbly encourage you to take Him up on His offer and let Him set you free--believe in Him! "'For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him. Whoever believes in Him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God's one and only Son.'" John 3:16-18 NIV
If you meet me and forget me, you've lost nothing. If you meet Jesus and forget Him, you've lost everything.

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