“Devotions From the Heart”
On July 4th, we in the United States of America celebrate our Independence Day birthday…a celebration of our country’s freedom as given by God and in our founding documents, the Declaration of Independence, Constitution and Bill of Rights. We are “endowed by our Creator” with these freedoms but, as we all know, they came with a cost. The price was and is paid by those that serve and protect us and give their lives for our freedom so that we can live as free people in “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” We are blessed by God for these freedoms and for His servants who serve in their callings to protect us. They are to be remembered and honored and thus it is our privilege as Americans to recognize them and our country on this particular day.
As free people, we have the joy of freedom of worship, praise and thanksgiving to our God who has created us, given us life and joy, and the ability to seek Him in prayer and worship. The love of God towards us was also not free. It cost God the life and death of His beloved Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ. His life for ours so that we could live now and in eternity. What joy is this? It is true freedom, true deliverance, true life, joy and happiness in our God and His salvation forever. It is ours by His grace now and forever and no one can ever pluck us from His almighty hand or remove us from His love and salvation. We are His free blood-bought children forever.
As we celebrate our July 4th “Independence Day” let us remember God’s gifts of freedom in life and His gift of His Son without which we would have neither freedom nor life nor country. Thanks be to God for all of His gifts!…TG-RW
This devotional prayer from “Valley of Vision” sums up so well our freedom in Christ:
And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” John 8:32
“O Holy Father, thou hast freely given thy Son,
O Divine Son, thou hast freely paid my debt,
O Eternal Spirit, thou hast freely bid me come,
O Triune God, thou dost freely grace me with salvation.
Prayers and tears could not suffice to pardon my sins,
nor anything less than atoning blood,
but my believing is my receiving,
for a thankful acceptance is no paying of the debt.
What didst thou see in me?
that I a poor, diseased, despised sinner
should be clothed in thy bright glory?
that a creeping worm
should be advanced to this high state?
that one lately groaning, weeping, dying,
should be as full of joy as my heart can hold?
that a being of dust and darkness
should be taken like Mordecai from captivity,
and set next to the king?
should be lifted like Daniel from a den
and be made ruler of princes and provinces?
Who can fathom immeasurable love?
As far as the rational soul exceeds the senses,
so does the spirit exceed the rational in its
knowledge of thee.
Thou hast given me understanding to compass the earth,
measure the sun, moon, stars, universe,
but above all to know thee, the only true God.
I marvel that the finite can know the Infinite,
here a little, afterwards in full-orbed truth;
Now I know but a small portion of what
I shall know,
here in part, there in perfection,
here a glimpse, there a glory.
To enjoy thee is life eternal,
and to enjoy is to know.
Keep me in the freedom of experiencing
thy salvation continually.” 1/
1/ Arthur Bennett, “The Valley of Vision” A Collection of Puritan Prayers & Devotions
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