Some Freedoms Aren’t All They’re Cracked Up To Be!

© Wanda J. Murry, September 18, 2020

I have two new young adults in my immediate life – grandchildren who have hit that second magical age range of 18-20 years old (the first magical age being 13 years old and I have a granddaughter reaching this stage next month). They came out the high school gate chomping at the bits to break loose and run free. I’m watching them with a sense of excitement and joy for what they will discover about themselves, others, and this world. But, I’m also praying and inwardly fearful about some of the hard truths they will learn about how life isn’t always fair, all people aren’t inherently good, and how their free will has consequences that could set up strongholds in their lives not easily shaken.

I have one of each: a male and a female. With both, their parents and I have shared some of our experiences, failures, and triumphs. Their parents and I have warned them against making the mistakes we did in our youth to avoid the struggles we endured, some with lingering effects. They both listen, but their right to freely choose has clouded their decision in some instances. However, we are grateful there have been no mistakes thus far that has caused significant detours in their lives. Though, they both have come close to the edge of falling into a disaster or two.

I remember my time in the 18-20-year-old range. There was so much beckoning me to draw near. I got real close to some things and dabbled in a handful too many. As I look back, I know my mother’s prayers, coupled with God’s abundant grace, kept me from consequences that would have been earth-shattering for my mom, me, and my future. My curiosity and naiveté took me down some roads better left untraveled. At the same time, though, what I experienced gives me the credibility to explain to my grandchildren why they should avoid some things.

I’ve been listening to Tony Evan’s podcasts on American Idols this week, and it’s been food for thought. It got me to thinking how some of the freedoms we have as individuals here in America aren’t all they’re cracked up to be when we stop and dissect a few of those freedoms. Yes, the American dream offers a freedom that, in some ways, have led us into freely and openly indulging into things GOD clearly warned us to avoid as He laid out the laws and precepts to the Nation of Israel. The Old Testament is full of events that give a good picture of the physical consequences (i.e., bondage, enslavement, loss of GOD’s protection and provision, etc.) of doing things right in our own eyes. For example, in Deuteronomy:

  • 5:7 says – “Thou shalt have none other gods before me.”  We have given GOD’s position as our authority to other gods [people, astrology, mysticism, WICCA, Atheism, earth-centered or nature worship, to name a few]. Transparency here: in my carnal, baby Christian days, my husband was my god.
  • 5:13-14a says – “Six days thou shalt labour, and do all thy work: But the seventh day is the sabbath of the Lord thy God:” I’m talking about reserving your day of worship to worship, commune, and meditate on the things of God. We are workaholics. I wonder how many who don’t have jobs that require Sunday hours leave service to rush off to work and labor because they either rested on Saturday or didn’t finish the task(s) they started? Transparency here: I struggle sometimes finding the right balance, not on Sunday, but through the other six days of work to get the things I need to get done, done. Part of that is saying “Sorry, but no,” but most of it is a lack of discipline so – I solicit your prayers for more discipline in all areas of my daily life.
  • 6:14 says – “Ye shall not go after other gods… Be honest here — we pursue a lot of things habitually. Careers, relationships, money, materials, etc., as gods in our life. Transparency here: Sadly, one of my pursuits since 1997 has been excessive/emotional eating or what the Bible calls gluttony – I solicit your prayers for my deliverance to enjoy food but not overindulge.
  • 8:5-6 says – “Thou shalt also consider in thine heart, that, as a man chasteneth his son, so the Lord thy God chasteneth thee. Therefore thou shalt keep the commandments of the Lord thy God, to walk in his ways, and to fear him.” This, my friends, could be the biggest struggle for the Believer in Jesus Christ, the Savior, who has done nothing to grow in the knowledge of GOD’s Word. A spanking from God can feel like your whole world is crashing down around you. It makes a person feel like nothing ever works out for them. It can send a person into depression, make a person turn back from following GOD, and even cause a person to harbor all the things in their heart that Galatians 5:19-21 says we shouldn’t, thereby, grieving the Holy Ghost. Transparency here: I never liked spankings and got few in my childhood. However, as I came to understand my consequences were part of my Father’s chastisement, I began to understand as an adult that I didn’t like nor want them, and that’s when a lot of things changed for me in my walk with Christ.

This is why some freedoms aren’t all they’re cracked up to be! Where our freedom isn’t a get out of jail free card from parental, governmental, or GOD’s authority and rules. Where my grandchildren and other babes in Christ get stuck and wrestle to understand why they can’t have or do whatever they want when they want, and how they want. It’s why they don’t understand they need to read the bible, listen to wise counsel, apply the knowledge, and do the right thing even when everyone else around them is doing the world thing.

Some freedoms aren’t all they’re cracked up to be and never have been outside of the authority that God set in place so very long ago. Even when that authority has been corrupted, polluted, and misapplied, there is a need to examine what any freedom will cost you.

Our greatest teacher is what God put in His Word:

In those days there was no king in Israel, but every man did that which was right in his own eyes.

Judges 17:6 (KJV)

Additional Scriptures: 

  • Judges 21:25
  • Psalm 36:2
  • Proverbs 12:15
  • Proverbs 16:2
  • Proverbs 21:2

Trust me, my freedoms haven’t always benefited me. Have yours?

Dear Future Me

Dying daily that I might live …

Dear Future Me,

I am so glad that you awakened out of your slumber (Proverbs 6:9-11). The Father was so happy when you realized that you had fallen into the conversation of the Laodiceans (Revelation 3:14-17).  Even now, you never cease to be amazed at how liberating it is to die daily and empty yourself of that old man – self.  You never imagined the magnitude of the plans God wanted to work through you.  Thank you for learning to set your affection on things above (Colossians 3:1-2) every day.  Thank you for allowing the Father to transform you into the New Creature (2 Corinthians 5:17) He created at your spiritual birth.  Stay humble as you continue to put on the New Man and put off that old dead flesh.  Continue to pray daily, unceasingly (1 Thessalonians 5:17) so your walk in Spirit and Truth (John 4:23) grows stronger as your Love for God grows more intimate.

I Love you, but I praise God for maturing you in the knowledge that no one can ever love us as much as God Loves Us, a fact demonstrated in Christ – His Son!!

black and white dead die diving

 

Are You Ready?

Not all exams allow a retest …

Copyright © Wanda Murry, August 28, 2018

Lately, I find myself thinking more and more about the day when I will come face to face with Christ.  I’m fairly sure I won’t be able to say anything!  And, although crying is a release mechanism for me, I will have a glorified body, so I’m pretty sure that’s not an option.

It’s not just standing before him though – I’m sure of my salvation and it’s not in question.  What I wonder about is if he’ll be pleased with what I’ve done with His gift over these 40 plus years, and if I have represented Him well.

man wearing gray sweater in selective focus photography
Photo by Segopotso Makhutja on Pexels.com

Every time I think about it I remember a scene from the Bruce Willis movie “The Sixth Sense.”  Toward the end, the little boy is finally explaining to his mom that he sees and talks to the dead. He tells his mom that his grandmother said her answer was “Yes” to a question the mother had.  Asking his mom what the question was, the mother responds, “I asked if I make her proud?

I only get one day at a time to make God proud.  I know He doesn’t expect me to be perfect, but at the end of each day, my hope is that God is proud of something I did to magnify His glory.  Daily, the thought of meeting my Savior face-to-face is a welcome desire.  Yet, there are other moments when I ask myself if I am truly ready to stand in His presence?

Definitely a reflective moment worth more than just a cursory thought!

1 Thessalonians 4:16-18  (KJV)

16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. 18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.

CRAVINGS: What You Really Want!

Real satisfaction is only experienced through obtaining what your souls truly craves

Copyright © Speak True Life, Wanda Murry, June 22, 2018

062218-cravings.jpg

It is my belief that in mankind’s pursuits lays the desire for a connection to others beyond customary.  Hidden beneath society’s downward spiral into moral madness, and disguised as human rights, politics, justice and the rights of the people, lies very basic needs.  Every man, woman, and child has a need to be loved, a need to belong, and a need for true intimacy.

Mention the word intimacy and many things may come to mind, so let me clarify what I’m not talking about.  I’m not talking about that physical imitator passed off through verbal graphics of bodies intertwined while the heart remains tucked away untouched and unaffected.  I’m not talking about sharing space or pleasantries or moments of time with another. And, I’m not talking about a surface driven state of euphoria that incites our emotions.

Nope  —  I’m talking about i-n-t-i-m-a-c-y 

  • I’m talkinga longing for; an ardent (warm, affectionate, passionate) desire
    • “As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God.” Psalm 42:1
  • I’m talkinga very eager or urgent or fervent desire for
    • “O GOD, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land where no water is;” Psalm 63:1
  • I’m talkinga deep, almost painful craving
    • My soul longeth, yea, even fainteth for the courts of the Lord: my heart and my flesh crieth out for the living God. Psalm 84:2

This desire occurs in the deepest, most remote part of our being.  It’s seated in our mind and in our heart. It has been covered, concealed and is often replaced with temporary idols in a vain attempt to escape the pain produced when it is unmet in its most genuine, sincere form.

Who on earth doesn’t crave a kindred relationship that makes your eyes light up, your heart warm over with deep appreciation, and your smile spread big and bright across your face?  Who hasn’t searched out the kind of intimacy that causes you to voluntarily and unconditionally open your arms to receive, to embrace, to take comfort in, and to bask under the protective covering of another!

black and white color splash fountain pen hand
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

As much as we crave this intimacy, we’ll continue to fall short of experiencing such depth of heart as long as we skirt entering the portal of God, where true intimacy begins. As long as we are willing to run along the edge or remain on the border of detailed knowledge and close association with God, the mind, heart, and soul will continue to have a great thirst for intimacy.

I love the way “Till I Found You” by Phil Wickham paints a picture worth a thousand heartbeats!  DON’T LEAVE WITHOUT LISTENING to the video below.  In it you will find two beautiful pictures for all of us:

  • An intimate relationship with Jesus Christ, the source of Salvation where our hunger to be known is met with the confession of our mouth, and the heart belief of God’s all-knowing, all-seeing sovereignty; and
  • An intimate, loving, committed marriage where the man loves his wife as Christ loved the church, and the wife, in turn, reverences her husband.

 

 

(imbed)

Song:   Till I Found YouPhilWickhamVEVO

Published on May 17, 2018

© 2018 Phil Wickham New song from Phil Wickham’s upcoming album “Living Hope.” Coming August 2018

 

Never lose sight of the fact that Christ came from his heavenly home specifically to create an opportunity to have intimacy with you by the redemptive power of his blood.  The Plan of Salvation is available to YOU!