“…stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage…” Galatians 5:1
It never fails! The minute you have to go somewhere in a flash, you pat your pockets, check your belongings, and realize that you don’t have your keys. It’s not that you don’t own them. It’s not that they aren’t in the house. It’s just that you cannot find them. Oh the terror; mapping out your destination to the second, putting all of the finishing touches on your wardrobe, and BAM-you can’t leave because you have no keys! There is a life lesson in this analogy…
One of the greatest journeys of any life is the voyage of liberty. Whether it is financial freedom, good health, or simply peace of mind, we are all on a very crowded highway finding our own space in this world. There are several dangerous detours that can inhibit our safe arrival to the destination of emancipation.
The first one is comparison. How many times have we looked upon someone else’s journey and grieved our own? We’ve heard it said over and over that comparison is the thief of joy, but beyond that, it is a proverbial prison guard of the mind. It keeps you locked away in invisible deadlines, self loathing, and regret. I can assure you, those people are doing their level best to be better than the person they were yesterday. You are right where you need to be in your journey! Take back that key!
Another detour is frustration. It is the immature thought that I need to somehow hurry up and get out of this space. What we do not learn from, we must repeat. Oftentimes, the stall is protecting the call. That means that if God allowed you to have your way all of the time, you would stay in a perpetual state of running and not conquering. Israel had many valiant soldiers; however, they set up camp far away from a giant named Goliath. When you get tired of being tormented by the giants in your valley, you will go down into the valley and confront them. Paul said, “I have learned in whatever state that I am in to be content.” That means that if I am here, He is with me, and the comfort of His hand is better than the running of my feet. Take back that key!
Lastly, regret is one of the biggest skeleton keys that we hide from ourselves. We feel that if we push away the past, refuse to speak, or talk about it again that we are somehow eradicated from it. You need a deep inhale and an even bigger exhale. Allow yourself to feel “that.” It happened FOR you, not to you. Look at the person you are on the other side of pain! Look at how much you’ve overcome, how passionately you pursue a better life, how hungrily you have chosen to grow. Why hide that from yourself? Regret is a cancer diagnosis that the heart feels, and the mind will never speak. If you are locked in the prison cell of regret, look under your pillow. The key is there. Paul spoke, “old things have passed away; behold all things have become new.” Constantly emancipate your heart and head by filling it with the truth that you are no longer that person. Grab that key!
In the dictionary, freedom is defined as the power or right to act, speak, or think without hindrance or restraint. That completely wraps up everything Christ has done for us. There is only one thing left for you to do. Retrace your steps. As with your physical keys, you must calm your emotions long enough to rationally ask yourself, “where was the last place I had my keys?” Retrace your steps. Once you realize that the keys didn’t walk away, you walk towards the place where you laid them down. Pick them up. Place them securely in your pocket. And never again allow yourself to lose your freedom to lost keys! You’ve got places to go!