Okay, this could go somewhere. Freedom.
It could go in so many different directions that I would be writing for quite a while. I try though, to keep my writing at a certain length. If I want to cover several of the possibilities, I will have to divide it up and write more than one blog.
With this one, I am going to write on how my faith and born again lifestyle has freed me. I know, that writing in a forum such as this, there are many different beliefs and faiths. And there are those who do not believe. This, is simply to share my story. This is my journey as a sojourner through this life to the next.
Somewhere in one of the storage boxes I have my certificate of baptism. To know exactly how old I was I would have to dig that out and that’s a scavenger hunt which will have to wait for another time. I remember it vividly because I took a breath before I was fully out of the water. Full submersion baptism. So as I’m coughing water up from my lungs the pastor is welcoming me into the family of God. I wonder if Lazarus was shaking off dust and spices as he left the tomb?
My journey hasn’t always been easy. I, in my human, hardheaded ways, took a few wrong turns. Yet, even though I wasn’t living the life I should have been, God never left me. He stayed close, keeping me always in His heart. My name is written in the Book of Life, I was and am, His child no matter how far this prodigal strayed.
I reached a point, where I felt that if I wasn’t on the bottom, I was very close. The struggles had become too much, the fears to often. I was constantly having the thoughts, that this was not the life for which I had been intended. The situation I was in, was too much of a risk to my safety if I stayed. Leaving there, was the first step in getting back on the right road. The good thing is, no matter how far I strayed, I was welcomed back, and I knew it to be true. The peace that settles in your heart makes all the difference.
Most recently, the wrong roads I have been on are the ones of fear, anxiety, sadness, loneliness, all those sad emotions that make your heart feel as if its breaking. I’m learning though. Every time I take a wrong turn and instead of feeling joy, I feel a sadness. When I stop and pay attention, I can feel my heart being dawn back toward the correct route. I’m not prefect, I make mistakes, but I’m always, always welcomed back. Like a toddler who takes off in a wrong direction, and the parent must show them the correct path, that often is my life. When the grass looks greener over there, but isn’t and I have to return to the true path. I can do so knowing no shame, only forgiveness and love.
This life of a Believer in Jesus the Christ, gives me a freedom from sin. A freedom from the punishment due to that sin. It gives me a freedom from all the wrong things as I move toward and draws me closer to all the right. Toward love, compassion, hope, trust, belief. That no matter how difficult the journey becomes, I am never alone. That no matter how dark the night, how rough the storm, there is always His light that guides me to His strong shelter. The closer I get, the more I trust, the more free I am from the struggles that try so hard to drag me down.
It isn’t a freedom to do and act as I please, knowing I will be forgiven. It is a freedom given a child of God, who has been given responsibilities. Some of those being to walk and act in compassion to others. To be the difference needed to assist others, to encourage others, to be the good neighbor in the lives of others. Not judging, not condemning, but loving. Jesus walked, talked, and ate with sinners. Not to judge but to heal and show them love and the freedom from the old life and welcoming into the new, into His family of God.
Though the verse in Revelation https://www.kingjamesbibleonline.org/Revelation-3-20/ was intended for the church at Laodiceans, it is true for all people as well. He stands at the door to our heart and knocks, it is up to us, to respond. And in that response, gain freedom.