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"Freedom, or necessity? Or do they differ at their maximum?"

- C.S. Lewis, Surprised by Joy 


i've been thinking a lot about freedom lately. in u.s. culture, "freedom" essentially means "the possibility that i can do anything i want." there are exceptions, of course -- yelling "fire!" in a crowded room, for one of many examples -- but most everything else is a free-for-all, a gray area of liberty. although sometimes things get fuzzy when worlds collide. you're free to smoke, but i'm free to enjoy a smokeless environment -- what then? suddenly neither of us is really "free," but instead, constrained by the other's right to freedom. and then sometimes, freedom seems to work in reverse. for instance, a fresh-faced twenty-one year old has recently been given the freedom to drink; the recovering alcoholic, on the other hand, has had to find the freedom from drink.

freedom gets weird sometimes.

and so it is in God's culture. "freedom" seems to have an entirely different ring. hedonism often looks less like freedom and more like oppression, and vice versa with obedience. the pursuit of pleasure can take a sharp, addictive turn from freedom to necessity; at that point, can such vices really be labeled as freedom anymore? on the other hand, following God's precepts can seem like a real chore; but at certain points the direction is appreciated, and obedience is perhaps even chosen with joy. obligation turns to freedom.

freedom to live. freedom from bondage. freedom in God.

freedom seems paradoxical sometimes. 


"You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness."

- Romans 6:18 [NIV]

Posted on Tuesday, September 27, 2005 at 07:55PM by Registered Commentermdog | Comments2 Comments

Reader Comments (2)

you are often quite profound.

I'm back on the blog btw
Sep 27, 2005 at 11:17PM | Unregistered Commenterpaul

I thought this was a good post. Just nothing left to say.
Oct 3, 2005 at 10:12AM | Unregistered Commenterrachel

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