Free Indeed

Today I understood the freedom that comes from fully trusting in God.

I have a fear of horses.  I have since I was a little girl and had a bad experience on one.  So, when I was told that we were going horseback riding while on vacation in Colorado, I was extremely nervous, but I’m also extremely stubborn.  So I wouldn’t let a bad experience hinder me from spending time with my family and.

Today as we pulled up to the ranch, a flood of nerves came over me.  I wanted to turn the car around immediately and go back home.  But somewhere deep down inside of me, there was an unexplainable excitement.  The excitement of overcoming my fears and seeing what could come from that.

So I got out of the car and prayed that God would give me peace and use this experience to bring Him glory.  And sure did He!  We mounted the horses and slowly started on our way.  By the time that we got up to the ridge, I was feeling pretty comfortable and was ready to run.

The guide that was with us was telling us that we wouldn’t have much control once we started running.

Oh great.

But he did try to reassure us by telling us that the horses knew what they were doing so we didn’t have to worry.

Right, so you expect me to put my life in this huge animals hands...or hooves...?  This animal that I just today become comfortable being around?  But I figured what the heck?  Why not?

And then he told us to run.

I have never before felt more free and alive.

We were all bursting with laughter and screams of excitement.

It was a blast!

But we had to fully trust in the horses and their ability to stay on the ridge and not run off the side of the mountain.  We had to trust that the horses wouldn't get too wild and kick us off.  We had to fully trust in something that we didn’t fully understand.  And through that trust, we found an unexplainable freedom and joy.

After we finished our ride, I pulled out my Bible and started reading it.  And sure enough, I cam across John 8:36:

"So if the Son sets you free, you are free indeed!"

I've grown up hearing this verse, but it never truly made sense to me until today.  Sure, I understood that through Christ I had freedom from sin.  But I never understood what that freedom meant.  And now I think I do.

It means that whenever you are fearful, you can still have joy.

Whenever you are suffering, you can still have joy.

Whenever you I struggling, you can still have joy.

Pure and unashamed joy.  Because we know that we are free.

It reminds me of a family that we are good friends with.  One of the daughters in the family has cerebral palsy and can't control her body very well.  When I was little, I was always awkward around her, because I thought it was strange the way she would squeal and flail her arms, but now I understand.

She was so full of joy that she couldn't help but scream.  She was so happy that she couldn't help but move.

It was the same way with David in the Old Testament.  He was so joyful that the Ark of God had been returned to his city that he "danced with all of his might."  What an incredible joy he experienced.

This is a joy that can only come from God.  A joy that continues through the pain and fear.  A joy that comes from being free indeed.