Have you ever really thought about what it means to truly live free? At first impulse, most of us would probably define this as: the freedom to do whatever we please, whenever we please. But, I believe that living like this will actually put us into more bondage, rather than freedom. I mean if we really sat down and took an honest look at our lives, we would see that we are all in bondage to a variety of things, both tangible and intangible, that keep us from living a truly abundantly full life. Now without going into detail about what an abundantly full life looks like. Simply put, from my perspective an abundantly full life is a life free from sin where we can actually choose not to do things. For me, that’s the core characteristic of freedom. When we are in bondage to something we lose the ability to choose. The world teaches that freedom is the ability to do anything, anytime regardless of the consequences. But, I believe that true freedom is the ability to choose to not do something. What is it in your life that has stolen your ability to choose?
Addiction is the epitome of the loss of freedom and there are so many addicted people in the world. Now, this may or may not surprise you, but, I believe, if we are all really honest with ourselves we will see, even admit, that we are all prone towards addiction. Take the the 420 Prayer Movement, we exists because of the harsh reality of the prevalence of drug and alcohol addiction. But, there are lots of people who are addicted to other tangible things like: smoking, gambling, food, video games, the Internet, sex, shopping, work, gossiping etc. But, there are also lots of people who are addicted to intangible things (which often times underlie the tangible addictions: anger (rageaholism), lust (fantasizing), stress & anxiety (always being in crisis), greed (accumulation of stuff), comfort (adverse to any change), laziness (lack of motivation), pain (self-punishment/mutilation), etc. But, the story doesn’t stop with our addictions. At the heart of the 420 Prayer Movement is the greater reality that true freedom can happen through Jesus. Do you believe this?
I mean, we all may say we believe this, but do your prayers reflect the truth that God is still supernaturally transforming lives? More specificallly, that He not only is able to set people free from addictions, but that He actually wants to do this because I believe He does. If you have never heard my story, please check it out because my own life is testimony to this truth. Too often I hear people say, “Well, that’s just the way I am” or even “What’s the use, I can’t change.” What this says to me is that they’ve lost any hope to change and are living purely coping lives without much hope, let alone joy. Addiction has a nasty way of sapping any and all hope, life and joy from people’s lives. But, that’s not what the Gospel says, at the heart of Jesus’ ministry was to preach good news to the poor, to proclaim freedom for the prisoners, recovery of sight for the blind and to release the oppressed because the year of the Lord’s favor has arrived (Luke 4:18, 19). What all of this tells me is that Jesus came to set people free! He even says, “So if the Son sets you free, you are truly free” (John 8:36 NLT). Are you free?