I asked yesterday how God has set you free.
Today I share my set free story.
The chains that wrapped around me were subtle and seemingly good, until they had me in a depression death grip that would not allow me to breathe.
I grew up a competitive gymnast. I loved it, the determination it took, the joy of soaring through the air, and the satisfaction of a stuck landing. But it also taught me to perform for my worth. I learned exactly what hoops I had to jump through to earn the approval of coaches and judges. Subtly through me teens and young adult life, these lessons followed me long after I had hung up my grips and leotards. I hit my twenties with a laundry list of standards in order to feel good enough in my own eyes. Be the best teacher, intelligent, in shape, skinny, a leader at my church, well liked by friends, respected by leadership at our church. Mostly it was perfection in the classroom (my new floor routine, if you will) that tied me in knots. I rode the rollercoaster of performance. Great feedback from my administrators and my heart climbed; only to feel dashed when I could see how I was so unworthy of their respect. The negative self-talk was perpetual. To combat the fear of failure, I worked round the clock to have the best lessons made from scratch. I tore myself up inside whenever I would fall short, thinking that punishing myself would somehow help me do better.
Eventually depression hit and Chris (my husband) was sick of playing second fiddle to my job. The summer of 2003, we spent away from our home in Seattle and moved to Boise, Idaho for an internship for Chris. I spent that summer working through The Search for Significance by Robert McGee while sitting by the Boise River. I replaced the lies with God’s truth. I understood and accepted grace for the first time, from God and from Chris. One day, I picked up a rock for each standard that had wrapped around me and chucked the rock into the river, letting go of over twenty chains that bound me. As each rock disappeared, I felt the grip of the bondage loosen. I remember nearly skipping down the path by the river, astonished at grace I didn’t have to earn. He just gave it to me because of his crazy love for this messed up gal.
Can you relate to this performance-driven identity? What has you bound up and longing for a freer life? Ask Jesus for freedom. If the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed! Let’s receive that freedom today.
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I used to think of myself as a strong person. Until I wasn’t. Until the waves of life knocked me off my feet and left me sinking in weakness. It is in this place of weariness where my eyes opened to my need to receive from God. It is in that place his miracles happen inside of us. The God who promises to never leave us or forsake us, pours out his mighty and gentle power. “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness,” Jesus says (2 Corinthians 12:9). ...
You are…Set Free
Imagine with me the freed Hebrew slaves as they have just witnessed Pharaoh’s army get swept away by the Red Sea closing over them. A woman stands on the edge of the frothing waves watching the power of oppression sinking to the bottom. For four hundred years all her people have known is slavery and oppression. She leaves that all behind, now truly set free from her former life and walking in freedom and adventure with the God who Saves.