July 4th. The day our country celebrates its liberation from England. The day we celebrate liberty.
There’s another kind of liberty, and it’s the kind we don’t hear much about these days.
Freedom is not the right to do what we want, but the power to do what we ought. That’s liberty.
Certainly, I can make choices because I live in this free country. I have “rights” and “privileges” as a citizen of the United States. I pay taxes and abide by the laws (now that speed limit one is hard to do 100% of the time)! Because I am a citizen, I have my rights.
There’s another country that gives citizenship as well: the Kingdom of Heaven. For those of us who are citizens there, we also have “rights” and “privileges”.
In the liberty of this Kingdom there are orders given and they are found in Galatians 5:13: For you . . . have been called to liberty; only do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.
What does this mean? As pilgrims in a foreign land, it means that –
- we march to a different drum beat
- just because we legally can do something, it does not mean we should
- our actions and attitudes should be measured by how we can serve others
- serving others is a higher calling than looking out for ourselves
- our “freedom” does not give us license to serve our flesh or to cause someone else to struggle
- the stronger person will do what is right even when he has the freedom to do what he wants
How about it? How is your freedom? Do you have Liberty?