Monday, July 11, 2011

True Independence

Jeremiah on the parade route- July 4, 2011

"For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the working by which He is able even to subdue all things to Himself."
Philippians 3:20-21

"If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ
who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory."
Colossians 3:1-4

I am realizing more and more that I am not a very patriotic person. It is not that I do not love my country because I do; it is my earthly home. It is where most of my memories are, it is where I live, it is where my friends and family are and it is full of those who need Christ. It is where God has put me to serve Him.

This Independence Day was one of my favorite because we were wholeheartedly serving Christ in a little mountain town. It was not about the food; we ate sandwiches. It was not about red, white and blue clothes; we wore lime green. It was not about family since most on our team were away from theirs.

The lyrics to "Proud to be an American" really bothered me for the first time this year. There are so many things wrong with the lyrics from a Christian perspective. Should I be proud to be an American? The men who died did not give me my freedom. Who and what defines freedom anyway? I do not thank "lucky stars" for anything. As a child of God what should my attitude be toward my country?

I am an alien here. I should not think like the rest of the people. I should not talk like the rest of the people. I should not live like the rest of the people.

It is not my home. If you are a follower of Christ it is not your home either!

The problem is this: too many Christians sink their roots down deep in American soil. They are consumed with jobs, children, houses, land and the pride of life. They have a relationship with God, but it is void of sacrificial service to the Bride of Christ and lost souls. They proudly sing "God Bless America" as if it is a worship song and yet "I Surrender All" fades after Sunday service.

Independence Day took on a whole new meaning for me this year. Christ gave me true freedom. It is a freedom, that unlike political "freedom," can never be taken away. My allegiance is His alone and I would defy my country if it came to it. I never want to love things of this country (or any country) more than Christ.

Nothing here is real except for Him.

Nothing here lasts except for His Word and the souls of man.


Dawn said...

Good reminder!

Anonymous said...

"The men who died did not give me my freedom. I disagree: "Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one's life for his friends" John 15:13.