Do You Choose to Be Free?

This month’s word is “Freedom.” For me, I can’t help but to say the word and have a moment where I just take a deep breath and exhale slowly. Why? Because for me, freedom is liberty, it’s relaxation, it’s the ability to exist without restraints.

What does freedom look or feel like to you?

When I volunteered to write about this word months and months ago, I’d started jotting down notes – a scripture that blessed me on freedom, a song that ministered on freedom or a devotional that talked about being free. And then I purchased a new phone and lost all my notes (cue horror music).

However, there’s a freedom in that! Now, I’m free to allow God to share with you what He sees as His freedom for you in this season.

Freedom has many definitions:

·         The quality or state of being free: as,

o   the absence of necessity, coercion or constraint in choice or action

o   liberation from slavery or restraint or from the power of another

o   the quality or state of being exempt or released usually from something onerous

o   boldness or conception or execution

When God directed me to C3 Greensboro nearly three years ago, it was freedom that beckoned me and it’s been freedom that has kept me there. In my past life, I served because “it’s what you’re supposed to do.” I gave because “I didn’t want to get embarrassed.”

However, in being at C3, I pray, I worship, I give and I serve because I’m free to!

You see, before, my acts were self-effort works, I was trying to get to God through rules, regulations and works. On the other hand, when I moved from religion to relationship, it became clear to me that I was meant to live a Galatians 5:13 (MSG) life:

Now, I must be honest and admit it hasn’t been easy. Rules and regulations can hold you back and down, but as I intentionally answer the call of the house to pray, worship, give and serve, it becomes easy to live free.

Being determined to embrace freedom makes it easy to live and breathe the culture for the women of C3 – fun, relevant, friendly, integrity, welcoming, brave, authentic, freedom, respect, honor, and thanksgiving.

Embracing freedom means releasing yourself from things that have been burdensome to you.

If religion, or “churchy” things, has you skeptical about life, then choose to be unrestricted in God. If “church-hurt” has caused you to be overly cautious about people and their intentions, then choose to practice grace and free yourself from that state of thinking.

Until you take that step and choose to live in God’s freedom, life will keep you constrained. Romans 6:19 (MSG) says, “I’m using this freedom language because it’s easy to picture. You can readily recall, can’t you, how at one time the more you did just what you felt like doing – not caring about others, not caring about God – the worse your life became and the less freedom you had? And how much different is it now as you live in God’s freedom, your lives healed and expansive in holiness (dedication to God’s service)?

Now, let’s make a list. What areas of your life feel constrained? What areas of your life feel burdensome?

Next, let’s join together as sisters and placed these things in God’s loving hands. And trust him at his word:

But what happens when we live God’s way? He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard – things like affection for others, exuberance about life, serenity. We develop a willingness to stick with things, a sense of compassion in the heart, and a conviction that a basic holiness permeates things and people. We find ourselves involved in loyal commitments, not needing to force our way in life, able to marshal and direct our energies wisely.
Since this is the kind of life we have chosen, the life of the Spirit, let us make sure that we do not just hold it as an idea in our heads or a sentiment in our hearts, but work out its implications in every detail of our lives
— Galatians 5: 22-23; 25

Loving you freely & there’s nothing you can do about it,