Monday, July 4, 2011

Free To Be Dependent

I'm thankful for freedom today, just like most Americans.  I have to admit, though, that there are many things I hate about our country, many things that disgust me and anger me and sorrow me.  But just for this day, I'm going to try to forget about those things and be thankful for the greatest freedom our country has been blessed with.

The freedom to believe.

I'm thankful that I can believe the truth of the Bible without being openly persecuted by the government... and that I can carry my Bible with me for everyone to see, never worrying that someone might report me or throw me in prison...

I'm thankful we can bring our family to church (when our van isn't broken) to study and fellowship and commune with other believers, and that the Word of God can be preached and proclaimed without being censored...

I'm thankful for the current freedom we have to pass Biblical truths on to our children, to teach them and train them up in the way they should go...although I fear for this freedom in the future...

I'm thankful for the soldiers, both today and in past generations, that have given of their time and energy, and many who have even given their lives to protect these freedoms for me and my family, for this country...

There are millions and millions of people on this planet that will never experience such great personal freedoms as we have in the United States.  People just like us, but who are bound by slavery and poverty and political unrest.  People who are trapped by the religious views of their government, and who secret themselves and their families away to underground churches, risking prison, poverty and death for the chance to study and fellowship and commune with other believers.  People who hunger for the Word of God, yet are forbidden to own it or carry it or even know what it says.

Today I am thinking of these people, and I'm thankful that I wasn't born in a country wrought with religious persecution...thankful my heart doesn't pound in my chest and my hands don't get sweaty when there's an unexpected knock on my door... thankful that most likely, I will never be forced to give up my life for my faith.

But I'm thankful for an even greater freedom on this day to celebrate freedom.  A freedom I'm dependent on, given graciously to me by my Lord Jesus Christ when he chose to give up His life for all people, both persecuted and free, if only they will believe.

The freedom from punishment for my sins.

Happy Dependence Day

"For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith-and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God"
Ephesians 2:8

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