Friday, 18 April 2014

Freedom at Easter

If the Son sets you free you will be free indeed. (John 8:36)

No doubt you’ve seen this symbol a lot over the last week.
What does it mean to you?

To me it means freedom.

Today we will remember Jesus' death on the cross, and on Sunday we’ll celebrate his resurrection. For Christians this is the time we celebrate that Christ took the punishment for the stuff we do wrong and freed us from that punishment,  we celebrate our salvation and the fact that we can now have a relationship with God.

But for me it’s also representative of how Christ has freed me from abuse. It was Easter Sunday last year that I realised I needed to get out of my marriage and had the strength to do so. I do not believe I could have survived this year in my own strength, I’ve needed to be held up by God at every turn. Easter is a time to celebrate my eternal freedom from sin, and also my freedom here and now from sin.

And it doesn’t end there.

On the ‘first Easter’ Christ freed me from death.
Last Easter he freed me from abuse.
This Easter he is freeing me from pain and bitterness.

The last few weeks have been a struggle for me as the twelve month anniversary has rolled round. It’s been very emotional. But in all that I have reflected on my journey over the last twelve months, how whilst I might not ‘feel’ better I am now in a place of knowledge and have taken back control of my life, I have started to think about how I go about forgiving my husband. I have started to take steps towards removing the hold abuse has kept on my life even though I have left. This Easter I will look again at that cross, and grasp a little more of the freedom it brings by taking some more of my hurt, some more of my anger, some of my sadness and some of my burdens and leaving them at the foot of the cross for Jesus to shoulder for me. His yoke is easy and his burden is light.

Whoever you are and wherever you are on your own personal journey I encourage you to join me today and leave whatever it is you’re carrying around with you here, don’t worry, Jesus has broad shoulders and he’ll carry it for you. Come and enjoy some of this freedom that Christ brings, and on Sunday we’ll praise him for defeating those burdens. 

Long my imprisoned spirit lay,
Fast bound in sin and nature’s night;
Thine eye diffused a quickening ray—
I woke, the dungeon flamed with light;
My chains fell off, my heart was free,
I rose, went forth, and followed Thee.
My chains fell off, my heart was free,
I rose, went forth, and followed Thee.
 (Charles Wesley)

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