Like the Horses
Have you ever witnessed a group of horses running through an open field? Heard the sound of their hooves stampeding over the dewy ground? Seen the power with which they run? Felt the freedom they feel when they take off - so powerful and majestic yet playful and carefree?
It's something to stand in awe of, wondering at their might, their beauty, their energy. But why does it captivate us so?
In those sweet moments, the horses are doing what they were made to do. As a herd animal, they run freely with those around them. Built for power and speed, they make their gallops appear effortless.
Horses were made to run and to be together. That's when they are most free.
Most people never experience that kind of freedom. They spend their days feeling caged and looking toward something that they perceive as freedom. For some, freedom looks like money or power. For others, a lack of responsibilities. The truth is, most of us never experience true freedom because we're looking for it in all the wrong places. We have no idea what freedom is or how to live freely.
So what does it mean for humans to truly be free? What are we made for?
The Scriptures tell us, "For freedom Christ has set us free..." (Galatians 5:1).
The context in which this powerful truth is presented is the apostle Paul's discourse to the church of Galatia explaining that they, as Gentile believers, do not need to submit themselves to the Jewish law and practices in order to have salvation in Christ. Paul explains that their salvation is found in Christ alone through faith in Him and the grace of God. Salvation is not found in striving to do or be what they are not.
In the same way, our freedom is not found in striving after the things of this world or trying to make ourselves into what we are not. God has designed each of us with a broad purpose and a specific purpose:
- Our broad purpose as human beings is to be worshippers of Him who created us. We were made to give God glory, to ascribe to Him the worship He deserves, to acclaim His worth and might and power and greatness forever. What a wonderful reason for living!
- Our specific purposes tie into the specifics of God's design of us as individuals. He has given each of us gifts, goals, dreams, hopes, ambitions, and passions. And He has given us a lifetime to discover what those things are, how to utilize them, and to correspondingly put them to use.
You were made deliberately by a Creator who had both a broad and a specific purpose for you.
According to 1 Peter 2:16, you are to "live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God."
When we live in the understanding of these things - our general purpose to worship and the intricacies of ourselves personally - then we experience true freedom.
So stop trying to be someone you're not. Discover who God has made you to be and be that person for the purpose of His glory. Then, and only then, will you experience true freedom in this life.
(For additional reading on this topic, I recommend the book of Ecclesiastes and the book of Galatians. Also, checkout the sermon True Freedom by Pastor Timothy Keller. For freedom through forgiveness, check out the video series Finding Forgiveness by Pastor TD Jakes.)