When I was a young girl, we had a swing set in our backyard. I adored swinging, pumping my legs and pulling with my arms on the chains and going so high that the a-frame legs would rock up out of their ground settings. When I got as high as I dared without tipping the whole set over, I would launch out. Carried by momentum, I would soar through the air (imaginary cape floating behind me) and land in a crouch on the grass. I had achieved flight. The freedom was breathtaking.
Jumping out of swings, sliding down the tallest slide. Spinning on the round-a-bout with my head back and my hair blowing. Sometimes I think all those glorious childhood experiences, in a small way, prepared me for embracing the adventure of life in Christ.
We do have to release our hold on the things of this world, even on those relationships we hold most dear, and trust in God’s sovereign goodness as we are carried on the wind of His Spirit. Because of His redemptive nature, often what we think we’ve given up will be transformed into something useful in His Kingdom. Mysterious, I know.
In C.S. Lewis’ book, The Great Divorce, there is a brief passage that sheds light on this concept. An insubstantial man, with a lizard on his shoulder (earthly desire), is reluctantly convinced by a heavenly being to relinquish it. When the heavenly being “kills” the lizard it transforms into a beautiful horse, and the man, now more substantive, leaps on the horse and rides to the heavenly city. “By surrendering our earthly desire—even for our loved ones—humans can become more beautiful, more powerful, and more loving than they ever thought possible.” (www.litcharts.com/lit/the-great-divorce/summary)
Sometimes, the very thing that weakens us, God will use to bring us home. It requires a childlike trust to place the chains we cling to into His hands. When we do, we launch into the stream of His love, and we fly toward our destiny. This is freedom. “It was for freedom that Christ has set us free.” (Galatians 5:1)
Dear one, what thing are you clinging to that needs to be transformed? It may seem like something you need to cope with the ravages of life on planet earth, but I promise you it is nothing compared to the transforming love of Christ that can truly set you free. How do I know? He did it for me. I am not my own, and belonging to Him is true freedom.
Until next week, beloved, surrender to Him and be delighted by freedom.