(March 16, 2008)

When I think back to my Living Room devotional on Friday, I can see that I must have confused some issues. I was trying to talk about the importance of love in our lives – both receiving and giving love – and how those can help us cope with depression. But somehow I brought freedom into the discussion, jumping to it in an illogical way.

Today our pastor talked about the freedom Christ’s dying on the cross has made possible for us. I’d like to share some of his thoughts with you. I will share this post with my Living Room gang, hopefully clarifying things a bit…hopefully giving my blogging pals and Living Room pals some Easter-timely inspiration.

A portion of the pastor’s message, though not in the order he presented it: “We all serve something or someone and we all choose who we serve. If we serve only ourselves we’ll soon find ourselves in bondage, subject to the culture around us that invades our life, slaves to materialism and to everything around us that calls for our attention. The paradox of the Christian life is that we find the greatest freedom in service to God. We only live truly as free people when we live our lives not for ourselves but for God and his purposes.”

And from last Sunday’s sermon: “When you begin to live to be the kind of person God intended you to be, you experience freedom.”

And here is where my love topic comes in: God intends us to be people who live out of love for God and love for each other.

“For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters. But don’t use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love. For the whole Law can be summed up in this one command: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.'” Galatians 5: 13-14

And what gives us that kind of freedom? Accepting that Jesus died for us on the cross and becoming his follower. He gave himself as a sacrifice, a payment for our freedom from captivity to sin and all that hurts us. The pastor said that if we can understand the cost of this sacrifice we will understand the great value we are to God.

You are a person of great value and worth to God. He loves you in a huge way, more than you could ever imagine.