Feeling Bound? You're Already Freed

It seems like it's been such a tough last few weeks for me, man. Like, getting progressively worse, to the point of a stage of pre-depression. I've been allowing myself to wallow in things not going my way. I felt like I couldn't do anything to shake it, and it was overtaking my happiness. I've been reading my Bible, but barely, because I felt like I wasn't getting anything out of it. I've been praying for God to free my from whatever it is keeping me in my funk... but to no avail. I've been re-reading my blog posts, feeling ever so hypocritical that I could write those things, feeling like I had victory over them, but be sitting here in the present still struggling. I literally have been feeling like God has forgotten me, and just about worthless; unaccomplished... going nowhere.

My sister and I went to Anthony Brown's new CD release party tonight, and I realized my funk has been ME and my fault... an internal struggle. Sometimes, we like to blame our struggles in the Christian life on all of the outside pressures that we experience, but it's actually our own selves that are causing the struggle. As the Holy Spirit started revealing this to me while I'm sitting inside the church, I wrote down the title of this blog post, "Why Are You Bound If You've Been Set Free?" and LITERALLY, 5 seconds later this song, "Free" started playing.

Here are part of the lyrics:

"You don't have permission to call me, by a name that He never gave me.
I will no longer answer to things that He washed away with His blood.
There is no condemnation to them that are in His family.
When Jesus died, way back on Calvary, He took those stains and guilt away from me.
Whom the Son sets free is free indeed.
So praise the Lord! Hallelujah! I'm free!"

AND THEN, Anthony Brown started talking about how some of us are bound unnecessarily. Bound by guilt and shame and other people's opinions, and there's no reason for that- we're free! Sometimes, we need to remind ourselves of what our salvation has given us. We forgot that salvation is like a season's pass to an amusement park... with unlimited access, as oppose to a one-time ticket that you use or lose. The power of salvation is ongoing, and we have to constantly remind ourselves of what we've gained from salvation.

I literally started crying. Like, wow! Isn't it amazing when God speaks to you and there's direct confirmation about it!

I should be ashamed of the time that I've wasted these last few weeks feeling depressed and looking back at my past life. Way before I even committed my sins, Jesus died on the cross for me!! The chains have BEEN broken, so why have I metaphorically put the chains back on?

You see, when people go to jail, many are released and get their lives together; a second chance, if you will. They speak out about how horrible it was to be locked up, and how they never want to go back. This should be us in our Christian life. To be sinking in our sin, hopeless, is a miserable feeling... not knowing that Jesus can wash away our sins if we just believe, have faith, and give our lives to Him. Salvation and redemption should make us never want to go back. Be dependent on God, and not the comfort of your past.

Have you ever heard of prisoners who are released, but go back to ask the judge to put them back in jail? No! However, that's exactly what I've been doing. Putting myself back in the bondage of my sins... handcuffing my own self, but through conviction of the Holy Spirit tonight, I felt God saying, "Jameka... I set you free. You don't have to walk in your guilt and shame. You don't have to feel devalued or worthless; You don't have to be bound. Take yourself out of bondage. I already sent my Son who washed away your sins. Why did you willing put yourself back?"  *inserts tears*

Sometimes we get caught up in thinking that because we have a past, everyone is judging us, but can I just say, sometimes it's not that deep. Sometimes, because of our own insecurities we project our feelings onto others falsely. That person that you think is judging you and making you feel guilty  about your sins, yeah them. They're probably not even thinking about you. It's you, being led by the devil. Realize that God would not give his only begotten Son to die, through a painful death, for your sins, for you to still be bound by them and sitting recounting them.

Our sins are completely forgiven and forgotten. I know that God is not sitting in Heaven recounting my past. He knows what I've done, but the blood of Jesus gives me a clean slate; from the past, for the present, and for the future. If God has forgiven and forgotten, why can't you?

The devil will use your insecurities to make you think that you have to walk in your shame and guilt from the past, and having you internally struggling with the bondage that you've already been freed from. If you allow him, it will wreck your life and drag you so much further than you ever wanted.

That's why "Overcoming Insecurities" is such a big thing for me. When you neglect tending to your insecurities, the devil will use it to sow other seeds that will spiral you out of control and having you caught up in feelings that God has freed you from. I AM A WITNESS!

So search yourself and assess your heart. Have you put chains back on you that God already broke? Are you still walking in guilt and shame from your past? Let. It. Go. YOU'RE FREE.  Walk in your freedom.

When you start to feel your internal struggle and forgetting the freedom you have in Christ:

Recount what you have gained through salvation; as a child of God (See Ephesians 1)

    • God desired you! YOU are handpicked. It's not an accident. He chose us before the foundation of the world. (verse 4)
    • You are incredibly blessed! All spiritual blessings are given to you (verse 3)
    • You were purposed to be a part of the family of God. God purposely chose you! We've been adopted into His family. You see, our sin withheld us from being children of God by birth, but He sent us Son to redeem us so that we could gain access to His family lineage... He had a plan, so that none of us had to live without Him! (verse 5)
    • We have...
      • Redemption through his blood (verse 7)
      • Forgiven sins (verse 7)
      • Abundant grace (verse 7)
      • Abundance of wisdom and prudence (verse 8)
      • An inheritance (verse 11)
      • The seal of the holy Spirit of promise (verse 13)
Walking In A State Of Freedom,

Oh God, You are so good to me! I don't deserve it! When I look back at all that I gained through salvation, I'm so humbled. I cannot believe that You thought I was worth it. I came with nothing but filth and sin, but you exchanged it for so much more. Why You love me so much? I will never know! But I'm so thankful, God! I don't have to live in my sins. You've washed them away. Help me, God. I don't want to spend any more moments of my life wallowing in that which You have already forgotten. There's so much to be done for the Kingdom. Help me not to give in to the tricks of the devil, but instead be completely sold out for you. Just as I have no need to walk in the shame and guilt of my past, help me not to return to anything that was once in the past. You, God, will work all things together for my good. I don't have to cling to anything in the past, because You have all power to make whatever's best for me, happen. Help me to release my will in exchange for Yours, O God. I pray for anyone reading this post, God. Release them from any insecurities, bondage, or anything else that they are clinging to, as well. Restore us, O God, to be used in a might way for you. In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen.