Janis Joplin sang a song with the lyrics “Freedom is Just Another Word for Nothing Left to Lose”. How true those words are. When we come to the end of ourselves and surrender all to the Lord, we find we have nothing of our own value worth keeping, but all in Christ to gain.
Why don’t we like the words surrender and brokenness? Why do our hearts race or we become faint with limp limbs and pale faces at the thought? Do we hold our chins high, while clinching our fists in refusal? Surrender often has a negative connotation of giving up, of failure, of being a prisoner, held against ones will. Brokenness often brings to mind something being damaged, separated into pieces, not working properly, having no value.
Neither surrender nor brokenness feel or sound good to our flesh. They also do not line up with the world’s view of how we should live our lives: be strong, independent, in control, putting ourselves and our desires first. We are bombarded from all sides with messages to do whatever we must to get ahead, to obtain more things, things we don’t really need or sometimes even want. We get possessions thinking they will bring us happiness, or obtain them as a status symbol. All this striving to be on top, in control, and to gain material things that might make us happy, becomes a burden. In fact, it can make us miserable and keep us tied up, causing us to lose freedom and joy.
Could it be that freedom is being at ease with our self and our Creator? Could freedom be the absence of the need to obtain status, protect an image or have material gain? In that place of sweet surrender to the Lord, giving him the control, we find that, he is not controlling. We have freedom of choice, along with peace and joy. When we are broken before Him, he gently puts the pieces back together, applying his healing salve, his oil of gladness, making us more whole, precious and valuable than before.
Yes, freedom is another word for nothing left to lose, because we have already surrendered it all to the Lord for something better, freedom in Him. According to John 8:36 (AMP) “So if the Son liberates you [makes you free…], then you are really and unquestionably free.”
Whose way of freedom will we choose? The world’s idea which takes away freedom making us slaves, or the Lord’s way which brings us true freedom?