Laurie Ann has some amazing devotional thoughts and a true gift for representing God's Word and tying in Scripture to our everyday lives. One that she recently posted has grabbed hold of my heart and will be my meditation material for this week. She has written more extensively on the topic but I have included some highlights from her page and some thoughts of my own.
Her direct words are represented in blue ink.
To truly know freedom is to know being held captive. Many of us don't know what it's like to be behind bars, but we do know what it's like to be held in bondage to a particular sin or thought-pattern.
She had a photo illustrating the Scripture, Isaiah 61:1: "The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is upon me, because the Lord has appointed to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to comfort the brokenhearted and to announce that captives will be released and prisoners will be freed."
For as long as I can remember, I have been held captive by thoughts of being worthless, invaluable, burdensome, useless, and unlovable if people "really knew the real me". As I have been reading through the Word of God, I am amazed at the amount of references that mention how God, the Creator of all, loves me.
Psalm 8:3-4 (New Living Translation)
3 When I look at the night sky and see the work of your fingers— the moon and the stars you set in place— 4 what are mere mortals that you should think about them, human beings that you should care for them?
Laurie Ann often includes an acrostic on the theme she is sharing through her blog. The following is taken directly from her site but I have used the NLT version for Scripture quotation. Praying that at least one will be as blessed by her insights as I have been.
Fully rely on what the Word of God says about you---not what the world says.
Romans 12: 2: Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.
Remember that freedom in Christ is not a license to sin.
Romans 6: 1-2: Well then, should we keep on sinning so that God can show us more and more of his wonderful grace? Of course not! Since we have died to sin, how can we continue to live in it?
Embrace the truths God gives us through His Word and live according to His commandments.
Psalm 111:10: Fear of the Lord is the foundation of true wisdom. All who obey his commandments will grow in wisdom.
Esteem others above yourself.
Romans 12:16: Live in harmony with each other. Don’t be too proud to enjoy the company of ordinary people. And don’t think you know it all!
Devote time each day to spend with God in prayer, just as Jesus did.
Mark 11:35: Before daybreak the next morning, Jesus got up and went out to an isolated place to pray.
Open your heart to reading and receiving God's Word every day.
2 Timothy 3: 16-17: All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.
Make it your mission to share the freedom in Christ you have found with others.
Romans 10:14: But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them?