Tuesday, November 26, 2013

November 26, 2013 … Boundaries Yielding Freedom

Daily Berry Patch Devotions in 2013 - Day 330

Devotional Song: GO TO THIS LINK  – Please take your time to see a video I’ve posted several times to illustrate our breaking free from our selves, … a powerful song, performed by Nichole Nordeman, Finally Free, an exhortation that we can have freedom in Christ when we’re willing to be slaves to HIS boundaries.

Highlight Passage - NLT: Genesis 3: 2-3 …  
2 The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, 3 but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’” 
 Highlight Passage: Genesis, Chapter 3… GO TO THIS LINK … [NLT]

Reference Passage #1: Matthew, Chapter 4: Verses 1-11… GO TO THIS LINK … [NLT]

Reference Passage #2: Proverbs 3: 5-6… … [NLT]  
5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; 
6 in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.

My Journal for Today: Not too long ago two Christian counselors, Drs. Henry Cloud and John Townsend, wrote a book, entitled, Boundaries, which helped their readers set appropriate, biblically-based boundaries which can help them break free from behavioral shackles such as addictions and to help repair relational brokenness in the lives of Christians. The book became a best-seller, … even among non-Christians as well.

Going all the way back to the Garden of Eden, God has always established boundaries to protect the vertical relationship between Himself and mankind as well as to bind and guard the horizontal relationships between man and other men or women. As we read in Genesis, Chapter 3, linked above, God gave Adam and Eve a whole lot of freedom; but there was that fruit tree which was off limits; and these proto-gype humans then blew off their wondrous relationship with God by listening to the Serpent, Satan, whom God had allowed into the garden.

Even Jesus had a boundaries confrontation with Satan, which we read about in both Matthew 4 or Luke 4, the Matthew passage linked above. And we know that Satan tried to tempt Jesus with the same sin temptations he used with Adam and Eve, … the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, trying to get Jesus to breech the relationship He had with His Father in Heaven. But Jesus, as we know, would not step over the line in the sand (see the attached photo) which The Father had established with His Son.

So, often we have boundaries in our lives which we simply know we cannot breech because the resultant outcomes would be disastrous. The sober alcoholic knows he cannot take a drink; because, to step over that self-imposed line in the sand would bring disaster and drunkenness. God established His boundaries, such as the Ten Commandments, to protect His relationship with mankind; … not just to be a cosmic kill-joy.

No, … Christians come to know that our obedience to God’s boundaries is ALWAYS for our own good, … to protect us from our own weaknesses and selfishness, … AND … to give us the freedom of a fellowship with God which we can have with The Lord, … IF … and only if, we’re willing – in faith – to be slaves of our chosen obedience to God’s boundaries.

What about it, fellow Christian? … Where is the line drawn in the sand for you? What are the boundaries, which, if maintained, will give you the freedom you can have in your relationship with Christ? The line-in-the-sand is drawn. Let us choose not to cross it!
My Prayer for Today … Lord, thank You for Your boundaries which give me Your freedom and maintain my relationship with You. … Amen

Blogger Note: Everyday during this year, my daily devotional blogs are influenced by the reading and study of the online blog entitled Today God Is First [TGIF], authored by Os Hillman. If you GO TO THIS LINK  on the date of my blog, you’ll find a link to read Hillman’s TGIF blogs; or you can subscribe to the blog via email at that site.

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