Freedom vs Burdens?
This past week the United States celebrated its 242nd birthday of freedom. The celebrations took place in many forms for the land of the free and home of the brave. But just how much daily freedom do we who live here, experience? Has the nation who originally sought freedom created their own bondage?Â Atlas carried the weight of the entire world on his shoulders in Greek mythology. Some days we also appear to volunteer to play his role as many of us carry the weight of the world on our shoulders.
We often dismiss God as if we think we have grown up enough to handle things on our own without His help. At what point do we decide that our burdens are too heavy, and the questions are too hard for our human minds to answer? When do we realize that our problems are taking more time to solve than the time we have? At what point do we recognize that our pride is standing in the way of us admitting that we have made a mistake in trying to take on the world alone?
Are we like the old man riding down the road on a donkey while carrying a 200-pound sack of wheat on his shoulder? Someone asked him why he didn’t take the weight off of his shoulders and strap it to the donkey. ”Oh no!” he protested. ”I couldn’t ask the donkey to carry all that weight.” Yet, when we lack faith, trust, and confidence that God is alive and able to relieve us of our burdens we are doing the same and are slaves to the world and its problems. But there is another way, for Christ stands ready to set us free.
Relieve the Stress of Burdens
We don’t have to remain in bondage to the world or our own problems. There is a way to be truly free in this world no matter what circumstances or situations we may find ourselves mired in. Jesus is the only one that can free us to become the person that God created us to be. It is only through Him and His way that true freedom is found. The world and its problems or our own sins don’t have to enslave, control, dominate, or dictate our actions.
It is difficult to not get caught up in the burdens or woes of the world especially when they make a direct impact on your life. The American Psychological Association conducted a 2-part research on the highest points of the stress in America released in November of 2017 and January of 2018. The top stressors found in this research were; the future of our Nation, money, work, current political climate, and violence/crime. Health care tops the concern of the Nation’s future. Out of these top listing, most are not within the control of any one individual. This is why it is so important to remember that freedom from stress, problems, and or burdens come only through belief in Christ. He provides the real freedom from life’s concerns as we focus on living our life for Him over the world.
So, if the Son sets you free, you are truly free. John 8:36 (NLT)
The Happy Channel is Only Temporary
Many people love happy and sappy endings in a drama. It is a great escape, as the problems in the lives of the characters disappear in a short time. Last year, the Hallmark Channel’s viewing greatly increased. According to the Nielsen rating, the increase crossed the demographics of male and female along with surpassing the ratings of major news networks. Hallmark’s CEO, Bill Abbott, says they are the place you can go and feel good. It appears they indeedÂ areÂ a relief from the daily news of doom. A place where all ends with smiling faces and resolved problems. Hallmark intentionally brands themselves as the ”happy place. But as good as you may feel after viewing the happy endings when it’s over you realize your relief is temporary. The relief of freedom only lasts the length of the movie as your own reality quickly resets itself.
By focusing on the values of the world you take on the world’s burdens. This causes you to miss what is most valuable, which is eternal life with God. True and lasting freedom comes only by calling out to Jesus, so He can break the power of whatever burdens are holding power over your life. Seeing clearly the way to eternal life with God comes only through Christ. He will free you from the slavery of sin by both self-deception and the deception that Satan’s creates. By accepting Christ as the only rescue, freedom becomes yours to live daily. There is nothing wrong with happy endings, but it is important to realize that there is only one true and final happy ending for life.
Find Forever Freedom
Christ not only frees us from sin and the burdens of the world He makes us ready for eternal life with God. It is through His freedom that we can live the true purpose that God created us to be. Won’t you challenge yourself to accept Christ as the only way to eternal life? Root your convictions in Christ and you can clearly see a life of freedom, so the burdens of the world don’t rest on your shoulders. Know that God provides you freedom in this life and beyond and allow your motivation to thrive from this fact. Lastly, surround yourself with the comfort of knowing that God loves you so much that He designed a way for you to be with Him in His perfect, permanent, and always happy ending world.
Love in Christ,
The Greek historian, Thucydides said, ”The secret to happiness is freedom”¦And the secret to freedom is courage.” But true freedom comes from Christ who provides both happiness and courage and that is no secret.
What are your thoughts?
Do you allow the burdens of the world to take away your freedom? Have you found the freedom in life found only through Christ? Share your thoughts on being truly free with Christ.
Credits American Psychological Association (2017). Stress in America: The State of Our Nation. Stress inÂ AmericaTM Survey. Long, H. (2017, August 21). The feel-good Hallmark Channel is booming in the age of Trump. Washington, D.C., USA.