We all look to celebrate, especially as this world and our personal lives may hold such cause to lament. In fact, I often pray for reasons to celebrate, for laughter in my soul, for joy that makes my feet dance and arms punch the air.
But the bad thing about man made ‘celebrations’ is that whatever you bring into it, sadness, defeat, loss, sickness, disappointment, you will end up bringing out with you at the end. Man-made celebrations tantalize the flesh with sensory pleasures….fireworks, food, drink and parades….but are powerless to reach the needs of the heart or release us from what really oppresses.
It is our heart and soul that long for victory and celebration.
To celebrate freedom from England or any other government can never replace the true cause for man to rejoice – the freedom to approach God, the freedom from sin, from guilt and all that would separate us from our Heavenly Father.
“But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.” II Corinthians 3:17
The Bible says that the devil blinds us, taking us captive to do his will; that sin is a bondage, a prison, from which only our Savior and Deliverer can destroy.
I pray that on this Independence Day and every day our families, our neighbors, our community and country will look deeper for a true reason to celebrate. Lord, stir our hearts away from the temporal. Let us rejoice as heaven rejoices, when a sinner – anyone separated from God – turns from his ways and trusts the Lord Jesus for forgiveness and new life. When a person is not just born into this world but born again into the family of God, that is cause for us to dance and shout!
May we see the Holy Spirit move and save those around us and celebrate as the Kingdom of God advances – freeing us from all that would ensnare and oppress – and leading us boldly to the Throne of God.
“For He has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son He loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.” Colossians 1:13-14