Friday, July 30, 2010

Let Freedom Ring

Wednesday, July 28 was Peruvian Independence Day!

As a result, I've been thinking a lot about freedom.

Some definitions:

  • The condition of being free of restraints.

  • Liberty of the person from slavery, detention, or oppression.

    1. Political independence.
    2. Exemption from the arbitrary exercise of authority in the performance of a specific action; civil liberty:freedom of assembly.

  • Exemption from an unpleasant or onerous condition: freedom from want.

  • The capacity to exercise choice; free will: We have the freedom to do as we please all afternoon

  • There are a few contexts in which I've been thinking about freedom. First with the fact that Peru has freedom from Spain!

    Also, I am teaching people to be disciples of Jesus Christ, and freedom is an important part of that. We are given freedom from our slavery to sin,  and also freedom to stop working to earn our salvation. We are free in Christ Jesus!

    I've also thought about what not having freedom looks like. I know it might sound dramatic, but some days, it feels like we live almost in a prison. I love it here, don't get me wrong, but we live far from everything. And we can't go out by ourselves. And we live with 20 people now, with more moving in within the next couple weeks. It's a great community for sure, but when you need alone time, there are few places to go. We definitely gave up freedom to come and go as we please, freedom of independence.

    We gave up certain other personal freedoms as well. We agreed to certain rules, rules to live by to keep us focused. We chose to follow our call and seek first the kingdom of God.

    But we also have the freedom to choose our own way. We have the freedom to focus on our selves. And because some people from our team forgot their focus, we are losing four members of the Cusco team. Suddenly, we only have three pairs to do all of the work in Cusco.

    But now we on the Cusco team are learning new freedoms. We are learning the freedom we have to give grace. We are learning the freedom we have to defy odds! Because we are taking it upon ourselves to do all the work of six pairs between the three of us. We have the freedom to step up and refocus and give all of ourselves for the work of church planting, for the kingdom of God.

    And this is where we are all at on the Cusco team. We want to focus solely on the kingdom of God. And we are going to first focus on our three assigned church plant sites, but after that, the sky is the limit. We won't stop until the name of Jesus Christ is proclaimed in Cusco.

    But it is probably important to note that many people have said that Cusco may be the hardest place to do this work. The people are bound in darkness. I have seen the spiritual warfare there firsthand, but if I had any doubt, the way this team has been attacked makes me even more sure. The work there will be hard, but I am in this for the long haul. I am all in. I only want to seek first the kingdom of God. That is all that matters.

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