Jesus + freedom
Imagine you’ve got a serious problem. People are asking, “Is this the result of bad things you’ve done; or somehow connected to your family issues?”
Then you have an encounter with Jesus…
He basically says “No, it has nothing to do with your junk, or your family’s junk.” He then proceeds to set you free. Free, meaning you no longer have the problem. Seriously. Your whole life is changed. You can see things you never saw before, enjoy life like never before, and any stigma from your past is completely gone. That’s the kind of thing Jesus does because that’s who He is, and He enjoys doing it.
So you’re relishing your new found freedom, but strangely, it doesn’t produce the same kind of happiness in others. Have you ever experienced rejection, on the heels of something good happening?
Some people are mystified. Some just can’t believe it. Some “religious” ones are the most critical and reactive. Others say “he claims Jesus set him free, but that can’t be true, what a weirdo.”
It doesn’t stop there. Some of your “friends” get so angry they write you off. They say you can’t hang out with them anymore. They unfriend you. They say you’ve got a mental problem. What a strange equation; “Jesus + freedom = rejection”
When you try to explain it they get more angry, and accuse you of being arrogant, thinking you’re better than they are. You keep pointing to Jesus and to your freedom, thinking they would really appreciate finding the same kind of happiness. Wrong.
Now you’ve found freedom, you’ve been rejected (and have a new stigma), but you wouldn’t trade it for anything.
In fact, you feel even more challenged by Jesus to follow Him and walk with Him in this new life. All with the promise of ongoing freedom. And you’re hoping to find some new friends who will understand and walk with you.
This is the story of the guy Jesus healed in John 9, check it out. It’s also my story. It might be your story.? I wasn’t physically blind but I was living without hope; trying to fill the void with anything that would bring comfort. Then I encountered Jesus.
Sometimes “Jesus + freedom = acceptance”
Sometimes “Jesus + freedom = rejection”
Sometimes “Jesus + freedom = unchartered territory”
We can get too focused on the result and lose sight of this simple truth. Jesus + freedom is worth it all.
Maybe there aren’t any simple answers as to why you’re in the place you’re in. Maybe no one needs to be blamed? We all need forgiveness and none of us deserves His love.
Maybe letting go of what you don’t understand is the first step toward Jesus?
Just maybe Jesus is coming to you right now and offering you freedom. You know He can do it. And yes, He wants to. Just ask Him and see what happens.
Jesus said “A thief is only there to steal and kill and destroy. I came so they can have real and eternal life, more and better life than they ever dreamed of.” John 10:10 Message translation