Americans will say they are free; yet, most Americans are slaves. American culture is geared to enslaving us through its philosophy and advertising. American credit card debt over $15,000), freedom from weight (45 million Americans a year diet and spend $33 million on weight loss products), freedom from relationships (“Sometimes at last doesn’t happen at first” – State Farm), and freedom from your location (“Stop searching, start flying” - Southwest Airlines”). Material freedom, physical freedom, relationship freedom, location freedom does not compare to spiritual freedom. The unceasing search for all of these kinds of freedom are revelations of our spiritual bankruptcy and spiritual emptiness. St. Paul addressed the issue this way:
“Were you a slave when you were called? Don’t let it trouble you—although if you can gain your freedom, do so. For the one who was a slave when called to faith in the Lord is the Lord’s freed person; similarly, the one who was free when called is Christ’s slave. You were bought at a price; do not become slaves of human beings. (I Corinthians 7:21-23).
St. Paul provides a paradox here – you are free; you are a slave. How can this be? Followers of Jesus are free from their possessive egos, their false selves. No longer a slave of their appetites or desires. Their desires are being transformed day by day as they follow Jesus. Yet, slaves of Jesus? Slavery implies possession, protection and provision. You are owned by Christ. Wait, you say, owned by Christ? Here is the choice: be owned by our insatiable appetites or to be owned by Divine Love? After what are looking for but unconditional love. The God who knows us perfectly loves us perfectly. When we live inside Divine Love we are afforded protection from the forces that seek to destroy our inner beings. Inside Divine Love we also find all we need for happiness.
Ronald Friesen © 2015