I wrote this during the UK Covid-19 lockdown in April, 2020. As London heads back into a time of further restrictions, it bears another look.
(A three minute read)
I had to undertake some serious repentance this morning.
My thinking was all wrong.
Two days ago I wrote about being deemed a so-called ‘Vulnerable Adult,’ at a heightened risk of a serious run-in should I contract what’s going around.
I wrote, ‘So, I’m now locked in my home for 12 weeks. I have 81 days of confinement remaining, as of this writing.’
For this, Lord, I am sorry.
Here’s where I was wrong.
My mindset had me counting down to freedom. My eyes were only set on the day when I will no longer be confined to my home.
But what is freedom, really? Is it truly measured by my ability to come and go as I wish? Do I define it only by an untrammelled lifestyle? Or is there more to it than that?
What hauled me up short this morning was the reminder that I am not my own. When I gave my life to Christ, I set myself at His bidding and I look to Him for my freedom, not the ability to pass through the door of my flat.
I am so, so wrong to dumb down my definition of freedom to something mundane.
The classic verse on this is Galatians 5:1, ‘For freedom Christ freed us. Stand fast therefore and do not be entangled again with the yoke of bondage.’
Or, put another way, ‘Let me be clear, the Anointed One has set us free – not partially, but completely and wonderfully free! We must always cherish this truth and stubbornly refuse to go back into the bondage of our past.’ (TPT)
Again it begs the question, how do I define my freedom? If my freedom comes from surrender to Christ, I can hold onto that freedom wherever I am and whatever I’m doing.
There are lots of memes floating about on social media right now about how Paul wrote half the New Testament while under house arrest, and how Sir Isaac Newton developed his theory of gravitation while ‘self-isolating’ from the plague.
That’s all well and good, but puts the focus in the wrong place. That focus is still on doing. We need to focus on being. It’s out of a state of being that all our doing becomes well-anchored, and makes sense.
Remember, God doesn’t call us to a life of doing to earn His love. He calls us to a relationship of love with Him, which stirs our hearts to then get busy and do, which is how we love others.
He calls us to take action out of love, not just be people who love to take action. There is all freedom in the former and less freedom in the latter.
‘Beloved ones, God has called us to live a life of freedom in the Holy Spirit. But don’t view this wonderful freedom as an opportunity to set up a base of operations in the natural realm. Freedom means that we become so completely free of self-indulgence that we become servants of one another, expressing love in all we do.’ (Galatians 5:13, TPT)
Back to my need to repent, and change my thinking.
I’m no longer counting the days to freedom. That would leave me ‘setting up a base of operations’. I’d be hunkered in my bunker, waiting to be let out.
The truth is that I was released from prison the day I gave my life to Jesus.
I have my freedom today. The only question left is, what shall I do with it?
After I celebrate with joy, that is.