leave it at the Cross

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may i ask what your liberty means to you?

well, we are born into a world that makes us slaves to sin, but we are paradoxically graced with this gift of liberation through grace!!! 1 Peter 2:16 says, “Live as people who are FREE, not using your freedom as a cover up for evil, but living as servants of God.”

what are you to do with the freedom you have been graced with?

personally, i pray that my life reflects the beauty of my Lord. I pray OUR lives reflect the beauty of our Loud. I pray we live in such a way in which we consider the Lord’s heart in light of our actions rather than our own hearts. For it is His and will always be His heart that grants us freedom, not our own. our heart is constantly at battle to lead us to the earthly realm, while God’s heart wants us to boldly pursue an undistracted devotion to our Lord. to know God and to make God known should be our ultimate goal in life. secondly, i pray that we do not allow the freedom’s that this world has to offer win us over. I pray we do not grow too “independent” to not allow God to be our father.

because, let’s consider this:

within the past year, i was blessed with the ability to see my sister become a mother. the greatest most loving momma i know to the sweetest baby girl. i remember watching the first moments that my sister held maxi and the first moments maxi wrapped her hand around my finger. there is simply nothing else in this life that can compete with that feeling. now, when a baby or child holds our hand or even our finger, we get the highest of joys, right? it is one of the most delightful joys in my opinion, no doubt. NOW, imagine what God feels like when we hold His hand. imagine THAT JOY! imagine the smile on His face.

so, let us be freedom enthusiasts while also allowing God to come alongside us while basking in that freedom. embrace freedom while still living the fullest life with HIM. i can promise you He wants to work with you. He wants to join teams with you. He wants to go to war side by side with you. He realizes that life can be anything but a cake walk. He does not intend for you to do it alone.

i always begin to wonder why freedom is so hard for us to grasp, you know? why is it so hard to live in? well, i believe it is because of the lies that the world tells us. the insecurities that trap us so tightly that we can barely see above the water. life has become this coast of a drive when it is not meant to be. so often i find myself running back or pointing out my previous hurts and the previous things in my life that lead me far away from the freedom found at the cross. i will hold onto that boyfriend who hurt me, not realizing that not all boys will hurt me. i find myself holding onto the friend that once hurt me, not realizing that there is closure at the cross. the bad grade i received does not mean i am not capable of success. the time of numbness that my heat fought against does not mean i am not alive in Christ. i want to encourage you all to focus on the power of the cross. setting our eyes on the power of the cross is an essential and hope-giving practice. after all, you cannot heal yourself from your past hurts, but the cross reminds you of the resurrection power shown in Jesus’ victory over sin and death. God uses the same power today to bless us with the ability to forgive, to heal, and to be transformed. we were gifted freedom to become more like jesus. HOW RADICAL?!?!?

do not surrender all of your joy for an idea you used to have about yourself that is not true anymore — let Jesus have it.

FREEDOM: it is so simple, yet so hard for us to grasp. friends, go find it. hold onto it. run with it. keep on going. the cross does not want us to look back. we must go onward and upward. that is what freedom is. we are graced with the opportunity to do life with the conquerer of DEATH, what is sweeter than that?!?

as humans, we come with brokenness, bondage to sin, emotions of a tattered heart, and so much more. we come with good days and we come with bad days. some days we do not know where our human heart will lead us. BUT, neither our worst day or our best day can define us. i have learned that if your definition of freedom is based upon your feelings or your humanly actions, you’ll mess up EVERY TIME. but, if your freedom comes solely from the One who wrote the book of salvation, you will ALWAYS WIN.

may we be confident in the fact that He is the only one who fills us up. the earth will try to satisfy our hearts, but in the end we come to realize that God will shine through. whatever you are feeling today, tomorrow, and so on; lay it at the foot of the cross and give it to Jesus. declare your victory so loudly, knowing that you are already winning because He has already won FOR YOU. lay your heats where freedom lies: the cross.

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