Posted by: karanoel | April 25, 2018

Now, that is Freedom

A steady stream of poor food choices in my absurdly sensitive body was leaving me moody, tired and craving more poor choices, creating an an off-kilter universe in my household with me at the center. After a particularly dramatic nosedive (I’m pretty sure I scared John that day), I saw the lunacy of continuing to embrace my “freedoms” in this area, even when they felt justified or sometimes necessary, when what I most wanted was the stability and energy to play with my family and love them well.

food-healthy-vegetables-potatoes.jpgThat glimpse, accompanied by a whole lot of grace, enabled me to launch into the past several weeks of putting into my body what best serves it. While it hasn’t made me the Mother Theresa of my household or solved all my problems, there has been a beautiful quietness; a rest from the all-too-familiar spin cycle. The strangest thing to me has been the joy. Not for a moment have I felt deprived. Instead, I feel grateful for the all the good things I get to have and grateful for what they produce.

But this post isn’t really about food. (So please, please don’t feel condemned if you’re not eating well.) What it’s really about is freedom vs. Freedom. The first is the amazing gift of free will that God has given us to do as we please, overriding any and all instructions He’s given in His Word… if we so desire. The latter is His empowerment to live within the boundaries He’s provided, even when it means laying down our right to choose our own way. Lowercase freedom will produce all sorts of results, including fear, bitterness and discouragement; uppercase Freedom will always produce rest and joy.

An example is His unqualified directive to forgive others. We may be earnestly justified to hold onto unforgiveness for someone’s wrongs against us – and we have every right to do so. But it will bind us to bitterness, and believe me, I’ve been there; it produces no good thing. When we choose to yield our right to our own way (often after a prolonged season of experiencing the fruitlessness and frustration of it) and follow God’s lead to forgive, we enter into His rest. As we continue to choose His path, we will find ourselves safe within the boundaries that once seemed so restrictive. We will feel gratitude for the wide open spaces we get to roam once through the narrow gate. And we will experience joy because we were made for it and our Creator, who gave us just the right instructions, knows how to produce it. Now, that is Freedom.

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