As Americans, we celebrate Veterans Day every year to remember our military members who fought to preserve our freedoms. We honor all who have served, including those who paid the ultimate price to sacrifice for our liberties. Over 650,000 American troops have died in battle and over 539,000 have died in non-combat situations. More than 1 million lives have helped keep America the land of the free and the home of the brave. Freedom is not free.
The same truth applies to our lives as believers. As Christians, we no longer live as slaves to sin. Romans 8:2 says, “For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death” (NKJV). We are free to walk in the newness of life in daily communion with the Lord. The law of sin and death condemns us before we even get out of bed in the morning because of the weight of our human sins. Fortunately, because of Christ, we live under God’s grace that covers all our trespasses so we can walk in newness of life in the Spirit.
When we walk in the Spirit, we walk in the light. We walk in freedom. 2 Corinthians 3:17 says, “Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom” (NIV). The Holy Spirt guides our thoughts and actions so we can break the chains of bondage to sin and live lives worthy of our calling.
Galatians 5:13 says, “You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love” (NIV). Our freedom lets us love others well. We are not free to do whatever we want. We cannot indulge in any sin we want and think God doesn’t notice. Our lives no longer belong to us. The things we say and do represent the God who saved us.
Some people forget the price of our salvation. They cheapen grace into a get out of hell free card, forgetting their freedom is not free. We do not have an excuse to justify sin. Instead, the blood of Jesus justifies us from the penalty of sin that is death so that we walk in the paths of righteousness.
1 Corinthians 6:20 says, “You were bought at a price. Therefore, honor God with your bodies” (NIV). Jesus paid the price of His shed blood for our sins. He endured an excruciatingly painful death on the cross and the full wrath of God so we could be reconciled back into relationship with the Father. May our love be loud and proud as we show our liberty in Christ to the broken word where we reside.
America may be the land of the free and the home of the brave, but I can’t think of a better time for us to use our freedom in Christ as a door to share the love of Christ near and far. We are to offer our lives as living sacrifices (Romans 12:1-2) to spread the good news of a grace that transforms us from the inside out so the world wants that life-changing freedom for themselves. May we never forget the price Jesus paid for our freedom. May it compel us to serve others in love and shine as lights into a dark world.
Joanna Eccles has led Bible studies for over twenty years and completed the year-long C. S. Lewis Fellows Program. She is passionate about discipleship and helping people grow in Christ. Joanna enjoys coffee and reading, and currently lives in Florida.