2: 50 Days Freed

Why do we need to be concerned with being free? For those living in a country where slavery, as we envision it, has been a thing of the past; grasping what it means to be a slave is not easy. Many have been caught up in the enemy’s deception that the world wasn’t created by God. In that scenario there is no original sin, no bondage to this world. So in essence there is no reason to believe we are in slavery to something that doesn’t exist. But just because we don’t believe it doesn’t make it true.


It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourself be burdened with the yoke of slavers. Galatians 5:1


Looking back to the beginning, God made man and woman and declared that they were good. In fact, he put us above everything else he created and said it was very good. He had a relationship, a direct connection with Adam and Eve, they walked and talked in the Garden.  He gave them responsibilities to care for the garden, name things, only giving them one restriction to follow. One day mankind would choose to disobey God. We often hear that words can’t hurt us, but the enemy used words that day to forever change history. The moment Adam and Eve disobeyed Gods command we were put in the bondage of slavery to sin.


IF that was the end of the story then everything else we do wouldn’t really matter. If God had that day said ‘okay nice knowing you, you are on your own now’ I truly think we would be extinct by now. But God had other plans for mankind, he had an idea that this was going to happen, and he had a plan. Don’t think for a moment that God was caught off guard by what Adam and Eve did. Like any parent he was hoping they would stay away from this temptation but when they didn’t his plan to redeem them started. God gave us free will so that we would make the choice to follow him and make good choices, but with making good choices we also have the ability to make bad choices. God never made us to be puppets to control. We have an important role to make choices.


Because of the choice that was made for us we are born into the slavery of sin. Sure, it sucks that the choice of two people over 5000 years ago affects our eternity but thankfully for us it we can break free. God’s plan to set people free was one that took almost 3000 years to fulfill but in that time,  he help mankind understand what sin was and why we must be freed from it. God played an intricate role in freeing us from sin. He sent his Son to earth as a man to live among us. (sometimes hard to grasp, but God unlike man, is three persons in one, God the Father, God the Son or Jesus and God the Holy Spirit, yet still all God.) Ultimately God came to earth to walk with us again. He did everything that those around him did, yet he did not sin, as he was born without sin. When he was taken, beaten and died on the cross he took on the sins of the world. Not just the sins that were of the people of that time, but past present and future sins, all sin was put on him. Almost like a magnet it was drawn to him as he was sinless.


If it was to end there one might think that would be enough.  God removed from us what we did to ourselves. Yet it wasn’t enough, Jesus dead for three days, many theorize what happened those three days, but does it matter? He rose from the dead, no Dr. reviving him, not a person praying for him, he rose victorious over the bondage of sin. All the sin that was heaped on him destroyed he was freed from the bondage that tried to hold him down. But why then if Jesus is the victor over sin are we still in bondage to sin? Why didn’t Jesus just remove it from the earth then and there? Remember we mentioned free will above? God desires to have a relationship with each and every man or woman on earth. To remove sin would have returned them to that relationship, but the choice would have been God’s and not mans. Sin remained as to give mankind a choice to follow Him. This choice is made by accepting what Jesus has done. We accept that he died for us and that our yoke of sin is removed.


So how can you be freed from the bondage of sin? By asking Jesus to free you of it. Asking him to become your friend and guide your heart. Talking with him daily and he will show you how to live a life of freedom. Then you can show the world his love. Free people can free people.


Father, thank you for giving us free will. It may feel that your playing with us, but the truth is you love us so much that you gave us choice. I choose to follow you with everything I am. Help me to share this freedom with others. Thank you for the choice you made to redeem us from our bondage of sin. Reveal yourself to the world through your people. Amen

Picture from John the Baptist Art


1: 50 Days Freed

What does it truly mean to be freed? Many will read that and think free from oppression and/or prison. Some may have recently watched a movie dealing with being sexual freed or freed from a person who has been controlling them. Freedom in this physical world comes in many forms. But what does it mean to be freed in Christ? The bible has many stories and life lessons about freedom. Over the next 50 days or so we will be looking into what it means to be freed in Christ.


For he who was called in the Lord as a bondservant is a freedman of the Lord. Likewise he who was free when called is a bondservant of Christ.  1 Corinthians 7:22


Here in a letter to the church in the city of Corinth, we see Paul writing about being freed. This is one of those verse in the bible that when read can be quite confusing. I mean look at it, we who accept Christ are now free, yet those who were free who accept Christ are now servants of Christ? How is that relevant. Isn’t that trading one form of slavery for another?


The slavery to sin that we are under before we have accepted Jesus is not an easy life. Not every person who is a slave is beaten down. Some are not even aware of their bondage. Many have come to just accept it or even embrace their chains. There are those who grew up in the church, once accepted Jesus gift and left willingly putting the chains of bondage, thinking that it was freeing themselves. But there is a vast difference in what the bondage of sin offers you and what the freedom in Christ gives. Becoming a bondservant of Christ does not mean trading one boss for another. Your sinful master is ready and willing to heap more pain, suffering and burdens on you to keep you from finding freedom.  Jesus said let me take your burdens and trade them in for something better.


To be a bondservant of Christ is to freely go into service. He doesn’t want a conscripted group of followers, that’s why following Jesus has to be an individual choice. Something that changes in your heart and pushes you to walk out of the slavery you are in into the arms of a Savior, your family redeemer who already paid your debt that had you in slavery to begin with. Many find this freedom and quickly realize that the servanthood Christ asks for is not always easy but you quickly realize that you are not alone. Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to give you strength and wisdom to accomplish the tasks assigned. In Christ you are stronger than before and able to accomplish amazing things.


Today as we begin to walk this path to a freed life in Christ, I pray that you will share these messages to those around you. Either by sharing this blog or via word of mouth. We as freed people can make a difference in this world, showing others how to break the bondage of sin. Free people can free people has been a quote that has been in the front of my Bible for many years, not because it is a catch quote but because it is so true. We can no longer keep this freedom to ourselves, there is a world out there that needs to be freed and we need to be active in sharing the love of Jesus.


Father, I ask that today you motivate those who call themselves your servants to rise up in your freedom. Unite them in the mission of reaching the lost to their families, neighbours, coworkers, and friends. Let not an opportunity pass them by, give them words of wisdom to know what is needing to be said in those moments. The freedom we have in Jesus is not meant to be kept to ourselves and we ask for forgiveness if we have been selfish and keeping it to ourselves. No more. We need to be men and woman of action spreading your love.  It is time for us to stand up to our calling to tell others how to be freed. Amen



Has God freed you from anything? I would love to hear your story or comment on how God has Freed you. Or maybe you need some prayer. I would love to pray for you, that  God would provide the freedom that you need.


Picture from John the Baptist Artworks

Day 50: 50 Days All In

When we together in this series back at the start of the year we began with this verse.
Whom have I in heaven but You?
And there is none upon earth that I desire besides You.

 My flesh and my heart fail;
But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.

Psalm 73:25-26


As we close out I want to ask you how have you gone all in?

When you consider where you are in your relationship with God would you say you are all in?

Could you honestly take the Psalm we read today and make it your prayer?

Are you keeping anything hidden from God, or have you put all into your relationship?

How can we pray for you?



Father, we desire to have an all in relationship with you. Show us if there is anything in our lives that we are hold back from you. Help us to share our love with others. Amen

Day 49: 50 Days All In

If you have asked yourself can I be a solo Christian, someone who can do it on their own not needing a church family to connect with, I would recommend studying the verse today. There are many men and women who have this attitude that the church is corrupt and broken, a place of hypocrites and vagabonds. I can make it better on my own they say, I can read books and watch or listen to various preachers. I don’t need to be associated with any group of believers, they will only drag me down. As we come to a close in our study of being all in what did Jesus have to say about going it alone.
I am praying not only for these disciples but also for all who will ever believe in me through their message. I pray that they will all be one, just as you and I are one—as you are in me, Father, and I am in you. And may they be in us so that the world will believe you sent me. I have given them the glory you gave me, so they may be one as we are one. I am in them and you are in me. May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that you sent me and that you love them as much as you love me.
John 17:20-23 NLT
This just isn’t something the church made up to keep people in the seats and shelling out cash. We are called into the family of God. Jesus in this passage asks his Father to help us be one with each other. Other times he calls us the body, a group who are dependant on each of them, supporting each other and are essential for functionality. We don’t live in a reality of the Adams Family where Thing (a lone hand) can run around independently and survive. In reality, a hand cut off will drain of life and die.
Separating yourself from the church family will cause you to lose focus and purpose. You see this all the time when students who come from Christian homes with Christian values go off to university and don’t quickly plug into a Christ believing church. Their values and purpose get distorted by the adopted school family they replace Christ with. We wonder why they have fallen away. Churches that are located near Colleges and Universities need to be there with open arms to these students.
So maybe you feel your church is dysfunctional and you are ready to leave, maybe you need to realize that the grass isn’t always greener. I challenge you to not give up. Don’t abandon the family, invest in it. Work towards the health, fight for the family. Take some time to self-evaluate and see what you are doing in the church, are you part of the problem or part of the solution. Don’t give in to the temptation to walk away from the problem, tackle it with prayer and communication. Pray that church becomes effective in the mission of reaching others. Be positive about your church, build it up. Love your family. Being in an all in relationship with God means being part of a family of believers. You cannot avoid it.
Father, too many Christians are dissatisfied with their church family. I pray that we start loving it and building it up. I ask that we start working harder at the mission of reaching others. I thank you for what you are doing, thank you for the dreams and visions you are giving the leadership of your church, I pray for workers and warriors who will work to fulfil these dreams and visions. Let us as a church become more effective in sharing your love to others as they matter to you so they should matter to us. We want an all in relationship with you, make us stronger in this resolve. Amen

Day 48: 50 Days All In

To live an all I relationship with God is not meant to be a solo mission. We are communal people by the way we were created. God in His infinite wisdom knew we would be lonely and gave Adam a family in Eve. We need to have friends as close as family who can be there to help us in the good times and the bad. Those who think they can live alone eventually realize that they need some companionship. When you create close bonds with other believers it strengthens your all in relationship with God as well. God can and will speak to you through these bonds.
“A friend is always loyal, and a brother is born to help in time of need.”
Proverbs 17:17 NLT
Do you have a loyal friend? Someone who is close as a brother or sister? A friend who will call you out when you are doing things that are going against what you believe? What you don’t need is a friend who is always joining you in your failings. Sure, they are loyal and are there by your side, but if they are unable to see the end of the cliff both of you will fall. You need a friend who will build you up in your faith and vice versa. One who will always be watching your back and never have to worry that you got theirs.
But if my friend tells me I was sinning who are they to judge me? You must give them the right to hold you accountable for your actions. This is a hard thing to do but if you honestly hand over this to your friend, they will most likely do the same for you. Then together you can safely watch each others backs without fear of turning on each other.
If you don’t have someone like that in your life, maybe it is time to find someone or a small group of friends. It will take some time to build that trust, but it will be more beneficial in the end. You will most likely find someone like this in your church. You need to be involved in a local family of believers, not just attending on Sundays but investing in the growth of the family. When you invest your time, money and energy you will find that there are others who are looking for brothers and sisters to be accountable to. You can’t do this alone, that’s not how we were created.
Father, we are never meant to go this journey alone. Thank you for giving us loyal friends to help us along this journey. Help us to dig into our local church, investing our time, money and energy. Strengthen us to create the bonds that will keep us accountable to one another. Build us up so we can lift each other up when needed. Holy Spirit we thank you for your guidance. Keep working in our lives. Build in us an all in relationship. Amen
Check Back 5 March 18 for a brand new series 50 Days Freed. If you need to experience freedom in your life and there is something I can focus on, please msg me or comment. 

Day 47: 50 Days All In

To have a relationship with God, the Bible uses the symbolism of a door to our hearts. This reflects that if we want to have a relationship we first must open the doors of our hearts to it. Jesus isn’t like the S.W.A.T. team ready to bombard your life when you least expect it. Patiently and without fail he is waiting there for you. There are times when it feels like the knock is louder than others, this I believe can be true because we may have become good at blocking the knocking out, but someone telling us about Jesus brings the knocking to the forefront of our hearts. This is the feeling you get when you’re at church and the minister gives a salvation prayer and your heart is beating a mile a minute wanting to make the choice to follow God, yet something in your head says ‘RUN’. So, you ignore the knock and go on with your life. God desires an all in relationship with you, maybe it is time to open the door and experience the love of Jesus.
“We all arrive at your doorstep sooner or later, loaded with guilt, our sins too much for us— but you get rid of them once and for all.”
Psalm 65:2 MSG
“Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.”
Revelation 3:20 NIV
Jesus is knocking at the doors of every human being on this earth. He loves every single person alive and has a strong desire to meet them. He loves you and is knocking at your heart looking to come spend time with you. Have a relationship with you.
One of the problems we have is we have loaded the hallway to the door full of our guilt. We can’t see that there is a doorway yet alone hear someone knocking. Ideas and false teachings muffle out the call of the true saviour, feeding us untruths which keep you away from Jesus. Some believe they must clean themselves up before they answer the door and invite Jesus in, this just isn’t the case, he wants to meet you as you are. He will work with you to clean up after, why struggle to clean it up alone when he is offering to help.
Others feel if the let him in he is going to start condemning them for all the things they have done and collected in their lives. He promises to forgive you of your past and work with you to create a better tomorrow, showing you things, you will willingly throw out of your life when compared to the love of Jesus. Why would you wear dirty rags when he is providing the best clothing possible?
Still, others have just not heard anything about him. They live their lives oblivious that there is a problem called sin and that life as they know it is all there is. No one has ever shared the love of Jesus. The church to them might be a place people go a club of sorts for the weak-willed who get suckered in and throw away their money.
Lastly, others hear yet they feel that he couldn’t possibly be calling them. Voices telling them that Jesus is fine for others, but he wouldn’t have time for you. These are voices from the enemy whose main goals are to keep you spearhead from Jesus. Fight those voices, climb over everything that is in the way of you opening the door, rip it open and meet the man who died for you so that you may live.
Jesus is knocking at your door today! Will you listen? Will you fight against the voices that tell you he isn’t? Jesus loves you. He cares for you. He will heal you, spiritually, physically and mentally. He will bring peace and joy. Life as a follower of Jesus isn’t all rainbows and ponies, but it will change your heart and give you an eternal perspective that you never had before. God’s plan for you is to have an all in relationship with him. What is holding you back from experiencing this?
Jesus, there are those reading this that need to hear your knocking at their door. It is there yet they have blocked it out with so much other stuff that it is very faint. I ray that it will start to get louder as they lean their ears to hear it. Let it be persistent in their hearts. They need to feel your love from believers and know that you truly love them. Reveal yourself to them today. Let me be a light to them as well. They matter to you Jesus, so they matter to me too. Amen

Day 46: 50 Days All In

God desires to have an all in relationship with every human, that was the original purpose. When sin entered the lives of man, His mission did not change, He still desires to have the same relationship. For awhile He arranged that it must be through obedience and rules. Some of these rules were such that it felt impossible to follow. We believe He did this as to show us that without Him involved we cannot cleanse ourselves of the mess we are in. But when the rest of the plan fell in place we see that He made an easier way for us to have the relationship restored
For God is pleased when, conscious of his will, you patiently endure unjust treatment. Of course, you get no credit for being patient if you are beaten for doing wrong. 1 Peter 2: 19-20a
Jesus, coming in the form of a sinless baby, was raised by loving parents, taught the disciples of who he was and his purpose, was crucified whilst still sinless, and rose again to bridge the gap between God and man. This bridge is one that promises that we can experience the same relationship that Adam had in the garden where he communicated and walked with God. Jesus said, “I am the way the truth and the light, no one comes to the Father but through me” John 14:6.
To be in the will of God is to look at the mission. The mission has always been the same. Jesus commanded us to continue the mission in Mark 16:15-16. If we as believers are purposefully following the mission which we are commissioned to fulfil then God is pleased with what we do, and we can expect to be treated unjustly.
Does your life reflect the fact that you have an all in relationship with God? Do the people around you associate you with being a follower of Christ? How we carry ourselves and act around other people says so much about who we are. When we build up our church and the love of the family of God, it will draw people in. If our actions don’t match our words it will, of course, turn people off to our message and who wants to go to a place where no one is happy or there is no joy? We need to be involved in the health and life of our churches, sharing the exciting things that are happening with others.
Are you committed to the mission? Does your heart cry out for an all in relationship with him? The church you attend is not there to satisfy your needs but to be a lighthouse to those who are looking for the same relationship you have. There is freedom from sin for your family, friends, co-workers and people you meet walking down the street. But if we don’t tell them about Jesus or invite them out to meet our family, they will never know about it. They will continue to walk around oblivious to the fact they are separated from God. God desires to have an all in relationship with you just like he did with Adam and Eve. One where He can walk and talk with you bonding and working with us here on earth. I ask again; Are you committed to the mission?
Jesus, thank you for dying for our sins, creating the bridge that reconnects us with the Father. Thank you for washing away our sins. I pray Jesus that you will ignite the hearts of your people here in Canada to your mission that you have commissioned us to. Let us set aside the apathy and realize time is short, people are dying and going to hell and need to know that there is another way. They need to experience you, Jesus. Awaken your church family from the malaise that has crept into our families and shake us up. Help us set aside our pride and egos and start focusing on reaching others. Remind us that church isn’t about satisfying our needs but reaching others. Help us to show others your desire for an all in relationship with them. They matter to you so they matter to me. Amen