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One powerful blessing of being on the mission field is that it helps me to hone in on what really matters, and there’s a sense of freedom that comes with that.  Many things that used to matter much have become irrelevant in my life & what I am trying to do.  Now my life has become much simpler, my goals clearer, and my spiritual sensitivity heightened not only to the gracious workings of God, but also the desperate attacks of our enemy in our world to distract, blind & lead people astray from the One who can set them free.

Freedom is something that most people value highly in our world.  For freedom people will rise, face evil, and sometimes even sacrifice their lives to protect & preserve.  It was for freedom… our freedom from sin & death that Jesus Christ willingly shed His blood on the cross.  It is this message of freedom that we so desperately want to share with the people here.  Please pray for us!

For those of you who are in Christ, it is our prayer that you will experience freedom as it was meant to be.  I don’t remember who wrote it, and can only paraphrase, but there’s a quote that goes something like God who created the birds didn’t make birdcages.  Man created birdcages.  How true it is.  Even as saved Christians, we can go through life in limited freedom due to lies of our enemy, distractions from the world & unnecessary things we believe we can’t let go of.  These can all weigh us down from experiencing freedom as Jesus offers us.

Hebrews 12:1 tells us, “…let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.”

The relationship between freedom and purity is proportional.  Therefore, as redeemed people of Christ, we must first pursue Purity.

We must strive to keep the gospel pure.  In our world, there are continual attempts to weaken its power by either adding or removing something from it.  The purity of God’s truth we hold has to be examined.  We must be clear of what we believe because it is His truth that will guide us in life.  Purity of the heart & motives are also important.  In other words, why we do things are more important to God than what we do.  Of course, we must also pursue moral purity.

Second, freedom also calls for Simplicity in our lives.

We are to focus on what is basic & foundational in life & faith.  One such is relationships.  Are we investing in our relationship with God, and spending enough time with our loved ones?  We all have a way of complicating our lives, but Jesus explained to Martha, “You are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one (Luke 10:41-42).”  Sometimes we are more concerned with learning about God than actually knowing Him personally.  Are we regularly hearing the voice of God through His Word & speaking honestly to Him through prayer?

Also God promises that He will provide everything we need for life & holiness.  Therefore we are to pursue & pray for what we actually need rather than what the world is telling us we need.  This world has a way of complicating & frustrating our lives for our desire for worldly things cannot be satisfied.  Not to mention anything of this world can bind us to what is transient.

Lastly, we are to embrace Humility.

This is a tough one for it is a battle against our biggest flaw, pride.  Pride not only hurts those around us & destroys everything, but it also imprisons us from freely being what we are meant to be.  But when we look at ourselves with “sober judgment (Romans 12:3)”, rather than a sense of defeat, freedom is what we will experience.     There’s nothing more draining than trying to prove your worth.  Humility is an outcome of internalizing that we are all “justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus (Romans 3:24).

I believe as we pursue purity, simplicity & humility, rather than settling for less, we will discover freedom & abundance unending.  This is what I pray for myself, for my children, for you & for the people here in Taiwan.