Sunday, April 3, 2011

Got To Be Free

Heavenly Father, I come before your throne of grace once more to say thank you.  I thank you for being a refuge for children, oh God. I thank you for being a very present help in a time of trouble, oh God. I thank you for making a way, out of nothing, oh God.  I thank you for our family and friends, oh God.  I thank you for our jobs, oh God.  I thank you for being a God, who we can call on, oh God.  I thank you for your loving kindness, oh God.  I thank you for loving us, when we knew you not, oh God.  I thank you for your mercy and grace, oh God.  I thank you for the opportunity for eternal life, oh God.  I thank you for sacrificing your Son for our sins, oh God.  Who are we that you love us so much oh God?  You are willing to love us unconditionally, yet day after day, we prove to be unworthy, oh God.  Lord I just want to say thank you!!!  In our thanks, oh God, I pray a blessing on each and everyone read this message, oh God. I pray that you bless them in everything that they do, and everything they touch oh God.  I pray a blessing on their families, oh God.  I pray that they are in peace and that all chaos and confusion is blocked by your awesome power.  I pray forgiveness once more, whether by thought, speech, or deed. And Lord, if you have room for one more blessing, I pray that you continue to show mercy upon my family, oh God.  We give you all the honor, and all the praise!  You are the power and Glory, oh God, and we thank you in the name of your son Jesus, who is the Author and Finisher of our faith.  Amen!  Amen! Amen!

There is something about the word bondage that does not rest well with me.  There is something about being restricted that just leaves a bad taste in my mouth.  At this stage in society, the word bondage is sort of obsolete.  It is a word that really have no place right now.  That would be wishful thinking.  Unfortunately, bondage is well present, and affects each and every one of us in one way or another.  The word bondage can be defined as the state of being bound by or subjected to some external power or control or the state or practice of being physically restrained, as by being tied up, chained, or put in handcuffs.  Somebody reading this may be in bondage.  Somebody reading this has been subjected to some external power or is in a state of being restrained.  If you allow someone to speak to you in any way and are afraid to say something because you depend on them for something, you are in bondage.  If you feel like nothing you do can bring you out of a financial mess, you have been metaphorically restrained.  It is an intangible form of involuntary servitude.  It feels like you are forced to be stagnant.  Are you feeling me on this?  There is no need for me to list a bunch of scenarios to see which one you fall into.  You know what you fall into, and I am here to tell you it is time to free yourself.

The bible states “Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.”  (Jn 8:36)  I was tired of doing things my way.  I was tired of making decisions based on how it will make me feel.  I was tired of behaving in a manner that was inappropriate.  My actions were not of God, but of the devil, and because I was unaware, I continued to advocate for the devil.  I was now deep in sin instead of righteousness.  I got comfortable accepting the circumstances around me.  I did not see anything wrong with spending $200 a weekend to look good going to the club.  I did not see anything wrong living from pay check to pay check.  As long as I was receiving a check, I was good.  I did not see anything wrong renting for the rest of my life.  I did not see anything wrong carrying steal or busting them off either.  As long as I felt good, that was all that mattered.  In the end, I was a slave.  I was in bondage.  My life was stagnant and it was the norm.  DEVIL, YOU ARE A LIAR!!!!!!!!  This is what happens when we engage in sin too long.  We are blinded from the truth, and wallow in error.  This is what is meant by “And the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.” (Jn 1:5)  I saw the end results of Christians operating in order and seen their blessings, but said to myself, they are just lucky.  This is what is meant by “For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.” (1Co 1:18)  Time and time again someone was trying to preach salvation to me, and it sounded absurd to me, because I was slowly dying.  The bible states“All things are lawful for me, but all things are not helpful. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.” (1Co 6:12) Look what I did with God given freedom.  I made poor decisions and forfeited my freedom to be in bondage of the devil instead.

I told myself no more.  That was my first step.  Once I said that, the Lord saw my heart was in the right place now, and He reached out for me.  I reached toward Him, and he grabbed my hand.  I did, then He did.  I reached, then He reached.  We have to make that first step if we want to be free.  We have to give our lives to Christ, so He can remove the distractions.  Once I did this, the things that I thought kept me in bondage, was mere stepping stones.  Slavery of the mind is a terrible thing.  It can cause you to see things that are not really there.  Ever tell yourself, you will never make, it?  The devil is a liar!!!!  You are not only going to make it, you are going to be a conqueror! (Rom 8:37)  Ever tell yourself, that you just can’t do it?  The devil is a liar!!!!  You can do all things in Christ who strengthens you.  (Philp 4:13)

Family.  Friends.  I was so tired of being a slave.   I was so tired of being restricted.  I was so tired of not making it.   I was so tired of seeing everybody exceed, and I remain stagnant.  The thing that hurt me the most was seeing my wife stand behind me while I was in my error.  My choices not only put me in bondage, but my family in bondage as well.  Once I made the choice by saying “no more”!!!!  My freedom was in sight, and it was in the form of my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, the Author and Finisher of my faith.  Free yourselves also.  Amen!                                                                                                                                                         

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