Sunday, November 4, 2012

True Freedom

From the vantage point of my bed in my childhood bedroom in England , I could peer out the tiny upstairs window and see a large tree that held a bird's nest.
I used to love to watch the mother bird flit around in the nest, faithfully caring for her eggs until they hatched. Then, watching as she returned with food to feed their little mouths until they were strong enough to leave the nest and fly away.

Around the same time, (I think I was about 5 or 6), I became fascinated with catching a bird. My mom had told me that if you get salt on a bird’s wings they can’t fly, so they can be slowed down enough to grab hold of.
I remember running around the backyard with the salt shaker trying desperately to seize this magnificent creature destined to fly.

There’s something about flying that just shouts freedom to me. Unhindered, unrestricted soaring, sailing, floating freedom.
No traffic lights, no limits.

Trying to capture a bird is somewhat of an oxymoron, as is trying to contain freedom,
as it’s very essence is fluid. However, I believe all of us desire to be truly free.

Different people have different ideas of what freedom is.
Preschoolers think freedom is being able to eat as much candy as they want, while teenagers think it’s never having to sleep and being able to go where they want, when they want, with who they want for as long as they want!
Some of us think of freedom as being able to do something we can’t do now, like run a race or see someone we love that lives far away.

There is a passage in the Bible that demonstrates true freedom to me.
It’s an account of a very sick man, some faithful friends and a God who sees beyond the surface to what we need most.
Found in Luke 5:17-26, here it goes:

Now it happened on a certain day, as He was teaching, that there were Pharisees and teachers of the law sitting by, who had come out of every town of Galilee, Judea, and Jerusalem. And the power of the Lord was present to heal them. 18 Then behold, men brought on a bed a man who was paralyzed, whom they sought to bring in and lay before Him. 19 And when they could not find how they might bring him in, because of the crowd, they went up on the housetop and let him down with his bed through the tiling into the midst before Jesus.
20 When He saw their faith, He said to him, “Man, your sins are forgiven you.”
21 And the scribes and the Pharisees began to reason, saying, “Who is this who speaks blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God alone?”
22 But when Jesus perceived their thoughts, He answered and said to them, “Why are you reasoning in your hearts? 23 Which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say, ‘Rise up and walk’? 24 But that you may know that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins”—He said to the man who was paralyzed, “I say to you, arise, take up your bed, and go to your house.”
25 Immediately he rose up before them, took up what he had been lying on, and departed to his own house, glorifying God. 26 And they were all amazed, and they glorified God and were filled with fear, saying, “We have seen strange things today!”

I think if you were to ask this man what his greatest need was, he would be like, “are you serious? I’m paralyzed!” “Obviously it’s physical healing!!”
While this was a great in this man’s life and Jesus does heal him, He addressed the greater need, the need that we all have and that is forgiveness.

We can strive for financial freedom, seek freedom from limitations in our bodies our jobs or our bank accounts, but having a fresh clean slate of forgiveness from sin and it’s debilitating sidekicks, guilt and shame is experiencing true freedom.

Dealing with the physical afflictions that come with a disease, I would be the first to say
my obvious need is healing. But, I can tell you there is nothing like having a relationship with the true and living God. 
There are many long nights when I literally am just up and hanging out with Jesus, Reading His word, listening to His Spirit speak through those truths, hope, love  and assurance into my soul. Things that cannot be taken away. Freely given, freely to be enjoyed, unconstrained or slowed down by the grainy afflictions this life might try to throw on our wings of faith.

The limitations of sin that we all inherited as being part of the human race, hindered our ability to interact freely with God, until Jesus Himself became a man, to bear our sins in His own body on the cross and then rise victoriously from the dead. The rolling away of that stone from His tomb signifies the rolling away of the burden of sin that each of us can experience if we receive that truth and grasp Jesus hand for help. Truly, He will lift anyone who asks, out of the murky muddy waters of sin and put us on solid ground where we can live with Him securely.

All of our bodies will eventually fail, and then the greatest gift will be the most evident , eternity with the One who loved us enough to give us true freedom.

Jesus said, And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” John 8:32

And referring to Himself, He said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.
Direction, freedom from sin, meaningful and eternal life..
Not found in a system or a formula, but in a Person.

Today and every day may your heart open wide to receive Jesus, and soar with Him, unrestrained, on the wings of the forgiveness He freely offers.

“For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” 2 Cor. 5:21

Listen and be truly set free!!
Jesus, Messiah by Chris Tomlin

*Update..After a rough couple of weeks and "seeming" setbacks, I am happy to report I am eating better and better..Praise God!
My doctor said on Friday this was "nothing short of a miracle," as he expected me to get a PEG ( feeding) tube.
I have 9 more radiation treatments, please pray that those would go along smooth with no damage or inflammation to my esophagus and other organs.
I have  a CT scan this Tuesday ( the 6th) and should know the results by Wednesday.
Love you all!


  1. Thanks for the reminders Lisa. Hebrews 12:2


  2. I will be praying for you Lisa...God is our great Physician

  3. Thank you for reminding me Lisa Furrow...of the closeness of God thru adversity...I like Luke 17:11-9..***10 were physically healed but only 1 came back...the most important thing, the heart was healed....knowing Jesus is the only thing that is a special time such as this that we get to know God and need him..."cling" has new meaning for me...a disease that takes year by year...disappearing I am in front of my 9 yr old daughter keeps me clinging to God...John 6:68-69....such good news to hear you are eating...those little joys make me oh so thankful to my God.

  4. Lisa, your writing is both insightful and inspiring. Thank you for sharing yourself so openly. May God continue to use you as your body continues to heal. you are loved. Barbara