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We are blessed to live in a free country. Many of us spent time this week celebrating and enjoying this freedom. Too often we take this freedom for granted; we have grown accustomed to freedom.

I have been thinking a lot about our freedom here in the United States. I have thought how I would respond if those freedoms and prosperity begin to go away. Too often when I think about freedom, I focus on the things that make me happy and comfortable.

However, freedom is not about happiness or comfort. And true freedom is not something that the US government can give or take away. True freedom is found in Jesus Christ. Only He can free us from the bondage of sin. Jesus frees those who repent of their sins and trust in Him from the penalty of sin. We are free! No matter what happens within our country or within our world, we are free in Christ. Yet, just as we take the freedoms granted to us in our country for granted, we often take this freedom from Christ for granted.

How are we using our freedom? Are we using it to selfishly serve our own desires or to make our lives comfortable and easy? That is our tendency, and both Paul and Peter warn against this in the New Testament. Paul wrote this to the Galatian church: “For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.”

And Peter wrote, “Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God.” We like to use our freedom for our own good, we like to use it selfishly. Yet, God did not free us from sin so that we could use that freedom selfishly for our own desires. He set us free so that we could freely serve Him and others. Our freedom was bought with a price, it is a privilege and a gift - not something we earned or deserve. We need to use our God-given freedom to serve Him and to help others, just as Jesus did during His time on earth.

As you reflect on the freedom you have been given, rejoice in the freedom you have in Christ. This freedom can never be taken from you. Once free in Christ, you will always be free in Him. As you rejoice in this freedom, reflect on how you are using this freedom. May we use the freedom we have in Christ for His honor and glory, not our own.

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