Thursday, July 2, 2009

TGFF



Thank God for freedom.

Friday many will enjoy a brief reprieve from their normal work schedules, and on the eve of our country's 233rd birthday we will observe 'Independence Day.' Amidst the chaotic budget crisis California faces, we pause long enough to temporarily forget work furloughs, historic deficits and remember those who have served and sacrificed to pay the price for everyday freedoms we so often take for granted. In our State's Legislature, representatives adjourn each session 'in memory of' those who have passed away. Similarly, we will quickly mourn the passing of another 4th of July weekend. By dawn on Monday morning we will have buried our indebtedness with the immediate gratification of celebration, and return like slaves to the every day grind that is business as usual. That is human nature, I suppose - we are notorious for 'not realizing what we have until it's gone', for conveniently restricting recognition of our veterans to annual holidays, and for memorializing our heroes after they have passed. So, before you bum-rush the barbecue grill or assemble on a softball diamond, make an effort to find and salute a soldier, honor a Veteran, pray for our military families, place your hand over your heart and reaffirm your pledge of allegiance - with added emphasis on the words 'UNDER GOD' - to the greatest nation (in the world), the United States of America.

Thank God for freedom.

There is a freedom, however, that is eternal. Paul spoke of this in his first letter to the Corinthian church. In fact, it could be said that he penned the inaugural 'declaration of independence' when he wrote, 'Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received , and wherein ye stand, and by which also ye are saved' (1 Cor. 15:1-2). The original declaration of independence, of course, is the 'Gospel' - or good news - of Jesus' birth, life, ministry, death, burial and subsequent resurrection, which Paul preached. Because of the ultimate price that Jesus Christ paid on the cross, you and I can experience the abundant life and liberty - herein and hereafter - that only comes with the Independence He purchased for us. So, during our every day devotion let us be cautious not to hastily rush past the gates of His presence without first giving adequate thanks for all He has done, and for all He is doing; a sanctuary where there is safety, a local, assembled body where there is liberty, an unfettered pulpit, and an unintimidated man or woman of God with an anointed utterance.

Thank God for freedom.

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