“They are like trees growing beside a stream, trees that produce fruit in season and always have leaves. Those people succeed in everything they do.” ~Psalm 1
“…What counts is your life. Is it green and blossoming? Because if it’s deadwood, it goes on the fire.” ~Luke 3.
This week has been historic, and not just because of a presidential election. This week, while cleaning out my closet, I found a kingdom. I found liberty.
I’ve read Luke 3 before – the account of John the Baptist telling crowds of people that God’s Kingdom was coming, of his arrest because his words weren’t popular with those in positions of power, and of his divine encounter with the very Jesus he had been proclaiming for so long. But today, as distant windchimes gently played in the breeze, harmonizing with the sound of the rustling leaves while I sorted clothes and made a small mountain of items that would find greater purpose in someone else’s closet, my heart found freedom in the truth of the words.
The people asked him, “Then what should we do?” 11 He answered them, “If you have two coats, give one to him who has none. If you have food, you must share some.” Tax-gatherers came to be baptized also. They asked him, “Teacher, what are we to do?” He said to them, “Do not take more money from people than you should.” Also soldiers asked him, “What are we to do?” He answered them, “Take no money from anyone by using your own strength. Do not lie about anyone. Be happy with the pay you get.”
True liberty isn’t about entitlement. It’s not about a birth certificate or a voter’s card. It’s not about pedigree or political affiliation or social class. None of us, rich or poor, white or black, young or old, are entitled. Not one. Those in leadership. Those who serve. Those with. Those without. We are not owed anything. Liberty is so much more than “our fair share.”
True liberty can’t be voted on by Congress, can’t be outlawed or vetoed. It’s not a program, and it can’t be bought, sold, or taxed. It can’t be governed.
True liberty is a gift. A God-given gift.
Liberty comes when we realize we are not here to receive. Liberty is born when we become alive to the understanding that we are here to serve.
We share. All of us. Any of us.
We care. All of us. Any of us.
We don’t demand. We don’t manipulate. We lift up. We esteem.
Not because we are required. But because God desires.
And that desire comes from a life with roots that go deep in love. It is strengthened by arms that are lifted high and wide in adoration. It is perfected by hearts that are watered in grace and mercy. Like a tree with rustling leaves, moving in harmony to the sound of a song played by its Creator, a life of true liberty is green and blossoming. True liberty lines the walkways of God’s kingdom.
This week, I saw that kingdom in a pile of clothes. This week, I felt liberty blossom in the breeze. This week, I was reminded that there is greater history to be made. By each of us.
You will know the truth and the truth will make you free.” ~John 8:32