When I was child, I thought that freedom meant “I can do whatever I want”. Around the time when I was a teenager, I realised that I was plain wrong! I benefit from freedom in so many areas – work, leadership, health, relationships, economic status, and even my everyday needs – because of the people that have gone before me.
The older and wiser I (hopefully) grow, the more I realise that a big sacrifice has been made or needs to be made for there to be any kind of freedom, There is no freedom without sacrifice and there is no sacrifice without freedom.
A few years ago I started to get into leadership. I knew the word “leadership” but didn`t really know what it meant. I slowly began to see myself more and more as a leader. I focused on personal growth and started to lead different groups and teams. I have learned so much, but I still have a long way to go to be the type of leader I want to be.
The last few years heading into leadership have been a hard journey but also a very rewarding one. I`m very passionate about Bible-based leadership. I love helping people see their potential and then supporting them as they discover how to use that potential to help others. Living out this passion can be very frustrating but it`s also very rewarding! I believe that every person is a leader in some form, and can use their gifts and talents to know, show and go the way for others.
I love inspiring and outstanding people. People who live extraordinary, live-life-beyond-mediocre and achieve-the-impossible kind of lives! I think that people like this understand that they live for others and not just for themselves. We might only see their success but what they do behind the scenes often involves making big sacrifices.
Have you ever thought about who went before you or the things that happened that allow you to enjoy the freedom you have now?
In this blog I would love to share my thoughts with you about what it takes to bring about freedom.
Through my chronic illness, I’ve had the benefit of learning (and am still learning) traits that bring freedom – such as endurance, persistence, resilience, perspective and passion.
In addition to these traits there are three further practical things that I have learned1about freedom from Hebrews 12:1-3.
1. Remember them
Hebrews 11 gives us the “Hall of Faith” of heroes. People such as Abraham, Moses and David lived lives that made a tremendous impact on the history of mankind.
We haven`t met one of the above but I think we all know someone from our previous or current generation who has sacrificed something so we can enjoy the freedom we have now.
Hebrews 12:1 (MSG) says: “Do you see what this means—all these pioneers who blazed the way, all these veterans cheering us on?
The freedom we have now, doesn`t end here and now, freedom is continuous. By this I mean, we have the responsibility to keep doing what our personal heroes have done before us.
Question to think about: What is one thing that you enjoy now that a preceding hero has given you access to?
2. Consider Ourselves
Our preceding heroes might no longer be alive or are unable to keep doing what they did best. That is sad but it’s also a great opportunity for us to keep doing what they pioneered for us orwe do it even better than they did.
The rest of Heb. 12:1 says: “It means we’d better get on with it. Strip down, start running—and never quit! No extra spiritual fat, no parasitic sins.”
The current freedom we can enjoy is literally something we don`t deserve or weren`t a part of the sacrifice. But I believe that we have the responsibility to pursue our current freedom.
However, the problem with pursuing freedom is that at some point it can be tempting to slip into a comfort zone and just enjoy what we have now. But it’s not just our responsibility to enjoy what we have now but to enlarge and multiply it for the future generations.
Question to think about: What is one benefit that you enjoy now and can multiply for the next generation?
3. Focus on Jesus
Last but not least, if we feel tired of continuing, we can focus on the one who brought the greatest of all freedoms – Jesus!
Hebrews 12: 2-3 (MSG) says:“Keep your eyes on Jesus, who both began and finished this race we’re in. Study how he did it. Because he never lost sight of where he was headed—that exhilarating finish in and with God—he could put up with anything along the way: Cross, shame, whatever. And now he’s there, in the place of honor, right alongside God. When you find yourselves flagging in your faith, go over that story again, item by item, that long litany of hostility he plowed through. That will shoot adrenaline into your souls!”
Focusing on Jesus gives us great reward, strength, persistence, endurance, resilience, perspective and adrenaline. The name of Jesus isn`t just any ordinary name. It`s a name that contains so much power, that if we rely on it, we can run this race of freedom with so much more than we ever could dream or imagine!
I hope this blog has inspired you to run this race of freedom to change the world, bring even more freedom and to reach the impossible!
Thanks for helping to make this world a better place! J