Freedom—a powerful word that evokes hope and change. I always ponder this word as the Fourth of July approaches. I think about what it meant for the men of the 13 colonies who claimed their independence from England, eventually forming the United States. I think about what it meant for slaves throughout history (and sadly even now). I also think about what it means for us.
I was reading to my kids from their story Bible the other day about Adam and Eve. Right there, in the middle of a story I’ve read countless times, I felt God showing me something new. Before that point, I had never asked why God placed the tree of the knowledge of good and evil in the garden in the first place. Have you thought about that? Why would a good God place such a tempting tree in this perfect garden?
It was for freedom’s sake. The Bible makes it clear that God always intended for us to live in freedom. Adam and Eve had to have the freedom to choose Him. And so do we. And when we choose Him, we experience freedom all the more.
“Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.” - 2 Corinthians 3:17
“But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” -1 Peter 2:9
So what do we need freedom from once we choose Him? Well, I won’t speak for all women, but I can guarantee that most of you reading this might join me in declaring a desire for freedom in your thought-life. Amen?
How quickly we become distracted, fearful, insecure, and so on. What a hay day satan has with us within the confines of our mind—twisting truths, feeding lies, and planting doubts.
I want to share with you an excerpt from Remain:
As a pastor’s wife, teacher and mom I have to regularly fight off thoughts about my worth and about my ability to be and do well for my people. My mind hears lies like: “You’re dropping the ball, you’re totally messing them up, you’re not involved enough, why can’t you get it together, and other people are doing much better at this than you are.” How dangerous that thought reel can be. What a slippery slope it is to listen to even one lie about ourselves.
“In these instances, we have to ask ourselves a question: “Is this thought from God?” We can evaluate pretty quickly if it is or not. If the thought is not good or helpful, then it doesn’t line up with what scripture says about the character of God and therefore it can’t be true. Once we’ve realized the source of the thought, then the choice comes in. We can either listen to that thought and see where it takes us, or we can choose to use the God-given authority within us to take the thought captive. Once that thought is taken captive it holds no power over us. You guys, this is HUGE! We are not helpless in the battlefield of our minds. In fact, we’ve got some serious ammo to defeat the enemy’s attempts to sabotage our thought-life.”
If we do not take captive our thoughts, we are inviting them in.
Freedom in our thought-life looks like peace beyond understanding. It looks like a quieted mind in the midst of the demands of a loud world. It also looks like power—power to stand on truth in uncertainty.
“For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” - 2 Corinthians 10:3-5
So freedom is ours, friends. By freely choosing Him, we gain freedom all the more.
Pray with me: Lord, thank you for giving me all the power I need to take captive unwanted thoughts. Help me to know your voice so that I can discern when I am hearing from you and when the enemy is trying to speak lies. Thank you that you care for me down to every thought that enters my mind. Amen.
Have a blessed holiday week and may you walk in the freedom that was always meant to be yours!