I am so thankful for the freedom we have in America that was made possible by the sacrifice of so many. But as I celebrate freedom here, I can’t help but think of those 27 million slaves around the world who can not. While we are enjoying God’s good creation grilling burgers & brats, swimming in the pool or on the lake, and watching funny looking explosions in the sky, there are others around the world who could not even imagine such a thing.
The response to this should be one of righteous indignation, not guilt. God in His sovereignty has placed you and me in America with the blessings that He has for the purpose of His ultimate glory. And while we enjoy the freedom from oppression to a pimp or a dictator, we are no better off than anyone else if we are not experiencing the true freedom that comes in Christ Jesus.
I’m reminded of a quote from C.S. Lewis:
“It would seem that Our Lord finds our desires not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.”
Many girls and women enslaved in the sex industry cannot imagine a “holiday at the sea”-or on a lake. But many of us are no different: chasing after the American dream, drink, sex, moving up the corporate ladder…we are content with “mud pies in the slum” because we don’t know the surpassing joy and freedom that comes with being a follower of Jesus.
This Fourth of July, let’s experience and celebrate true freedom along with American freedom: “Let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.” -Hebrews 12:1-2 (NIV)