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  • Writer's pictureJohn Whitehead

Freedom and Liberty

In recent times we have all been faced with the choice to submit ourselves to those in authority or to resist under the guise of preserving our “freedom and liberty”.

I am not immune to having to deal with this reality. Along the way, I have taken the position; I would rather exert my independence than submit. My reasons for doing so, though valid from my perspective, have not created the fulfillment in my heart I would have thought it would bring.

Instead, I have become unsure if my impassioned desire for “freedom and liberty” was demonstrated and communicated properly.

You see, I chose to resign a leadership position in a church I love rather than submit myself to what I felt was an infringement on my personal “freedom and liberty”. This has led me to a lot of soul searching and introspection.

In the end I have come to conclude, I can do the wrong thing for all the right reasons.

My passions, though real, must be contained if I am going to be truly free. In other words, I must realize there are times where a short-term sacrifice can be the impetus for a long-term gain.

In my case, my desire for “freedom and liberty” clouded my judgment.

I do not believe I am alone in being confused by some of the situations we find ourselves in today. Knowing this requires patience and discernment before we make decisions based solely on our personal beliefs, desires, and passions.

I do not believe we should change our view or perspective to one that flies in the face of what we might know to be true. I just think we need to make sure we will be able to have as much influence after we have made our stand as we did before we made it.

All of this has led me a greater sense of my own ability to overreact and to move without thinking, simply because I feel I need to move.

As I have written in the past, I hope to be a lifelong learner and hope I can apply what I have learned as I go forward.

As a Christ Follower my freedom and liberty are found in Jesus. It is not granted to me by government or by any other entities I may associate with.

Here is where I believe we should be able to find the strength of conviction and character to believe we have been placed where we are, because this is where we are needed for now. This is true, regardless of how our sensibilities may be affected.

I am not suggesting we submit ourselves to being involved in any of the immoral or heinous behaviors we see all around us. Or to compromise our convictions. All I am suggesting is, we make sure the “freedom and liberty” we choose to defend is one that leads us closer to reliance on God than it does on our desire for “freedom and liberty”.

Galatians 5:13, “You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love.

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