Often in sports you hear of players or teams “playing tight.” Maybe they are nervous and crumbling under pressure. Maybe the player feels he is always on a short leash with his coach. Maybe they are simply afraid of failure, so they tense up and in turn fail. These players do not appear to be having any fun when they are playing – they are slaves to the game; they have no freedom – no liberty.
I am thankful for the liberty we have in our country. I was able yesterday to preach on this subject without fear. We were able to worship God openly without retribution. I am thankful for those that believe so strongly in the “unalienable right” of liberty that they have sacrificed their own “unalienable right” to life to preserve it.
I am also thankful for the liberty I have in Christ. He was willing to sacrifice His life to offer me the free gift of eternal life. In doing so He also purchased my freedom!
Galatians 5:1 Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.
Therefore I can “play the game of life” with joy; not afraid of failure; not afraid of the Coach; no longer a slave.
I encourage each of you to rejoice in your liberty. Yet I also remind you of the danger of abusing liberty. There is a very clear warning in Galatians 5 verse 13: For you, brethren, have been called to liberty; only do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another. Isn’t that a great reminder of teamwork?
The third “unalienable right” that our country boasts of is the right to the “pursuit of happiness.” This seems innocent enough. And based upon the oppression the founding fathers had endured is a reasonable statement. Yet this is why liberty has some dangers; our pursuit of personal happiness, if unchecked, can lead to a me-centered instead of team-centered attitude. And that goes against both our country’s constitution and the Scriptures which call for us to “serve one another.”
Let me challenge you today to use your liberty to reach out to others. Use your liberty to choose to do right. Remember that “selfish ambition” is a work of the flesh. (See Galatians 5:20)
Christian, you are free to love God and love others!