4th July 2019

Cry Freedom!

“Plant your feet firmly therefore within the freedom that Christ has won for us, and do not let yourselves be caught again in the shackles of slavery.”
Galatians 5:1 (Phillips)

Freedom costs! It has to be paid for and of course, someone has to pay the price. Last month the free world honoured those who courageously charged ashore on the beaches of Normandy from landing craft; those who filled the skies on parachutes and those who watched over them on ships and planes. We applauded their determination; we thanked them for putting themselves in harm’s way in order to liberate Europe, and we also remembered those who paid the ultimate sacrifice for that freedom—who now lie buried in the soil of Normandy.

Sometime after D-Day, actually on the 15th of April 1945—almost a year later—thousands were set free from slavery in Belsen concentration camp. One of those prisoners actually describes how he felt on that day. He writes; “We were reborn on that day, a new life had sprung up from the filth and ashes of the liberated camp. When the British army arrived some of us fainted for sheer joy, we never thought that we would see freedom again!” These weary and abused scarecrows in striped uniforms had been plucked from darkness to light and this freedom also came about through blood, sweat and tears.

July 4th is celebrated in the United States as Independence Day. The Continental Congress in Philadelphia signed the charter which declared that the colonies were separating from the motherland; stating that “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” Again, many fought and died; many were maimed in body and mind to bring about this freedom; it cost a great deal, in suffering, agony and sorrow.

Another liberator; Jesus, died and paid a great price to set us humans at liberty. True liberty causes us to view our future from a different perspective: our spirits soar, kind of like a butterfly that has finally escaped from the chrysalis and spreads its new wings of adventure. Freedom, liberty, produces within us a heart filled with joy, wonder, amazement and deep gratitude especially towards the ones who took the time and by their courage and sacrifice paid the price for our freedom.

What kind of love liberates sinners and sets them free? A Love that loved us to death and beyond! His other name is Jesus. So, to all who celebrate freedom today—let your joy know no bounds.

Prayer
Lord, thank you for your sacrificial love and courage that gave us liberty!
Amen

Study by Cliff Neill
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About the Author:
Cliff Neill is an Elder in Grace Communion Church Luton.

Local Congregation:
Grace Communion Church Luton
Farley Hill Methodist Church
North Drift Way
Farley Hill
LUTON
LU1 5JE

Meeting Time:
Saturday 10:30am

Local Congregational Contact:
Harry Sullivan
Phone: 01908-582222
Email: harry_sullivan@wcg.org.uk