Following Jesus, Life

Freedom of Speech {Finding Life :: A 30-Day Challenge}

Tonight my thoughts of life are around  freedom …freedom of speech …freedom to be a voice for things that really matter.  I’m grateful for this privilege but I’m also accountable to use it well.

In choosing to follow Jesus, I know that means following what He loves …choosing life.  On the other hand, choosing Jesus naturally means making a choice not to follow things and opinions that grieve His heart.  It comes with the territory.  You can’t serve both.  Life and death are set before me every day I want to choose life.  It matters.

My husband and I were invited to attend a local public viewing of the documentary, “13th”, an Ava DuVernay film.  As I watched the film, all I could say  was, “Have mercy!  God have mercy!” …over and over again.  It was a narrative I hadn’t heard growing up.  It’s painful.  I didn’t want  to look at it– but I knew I couldn’t  ignore it either.

With freedom comes responsibility.

Whether or not I’ve experienced or grasped the full impact of the narrative, I can’t turn my head and write this off as if this is someone else’s problem …not mine.  When I signed on with Jesus, I signed on to what matters to Him as well.  He already told us that He loves the entire world …all people of all race and ethnicity and economic status.  All are precious in His sight.

If that’s true — and I know it to be so — I’m not only called to follow that example to love all people –I’m responsible to that call.  I can talk all day long about how  I love and  follow Jesus but if I don’t love through word and action, what does it really matter?

The documentary was hard to watch.  It made me angry at the injustice throughout history of those who were marked as less important, less desirable, less worthy.  It made me angry at how money has such power over decisions that deeply affect the lives of people God loves and gave His life for.

Jesus gave the ultimate sacrifice so love and freedom and justice could prevail.  When anyone tries to take that power and control into his own hands instead of surrendering to the life-giving love  of Jesus, things go drastically wrong. The narrative gets twisted.  Lives are lost. Many are left in chains –some physically and others in a prison of their own thinking.  The reflection of God’s heart becomes unrecognizable when we put ourselves in the position of authority.

I’m choosing life tonight and using a simple space and voice here to speak life. This only scratches the surface of the much deeper issues involved …but it’s a start. 

I don’t pretend to have all the answers but I know I need to pay attention to the lives God is putting before me.  He’s placed me here for a reason.  I can’t turn my head and look away.  As a follower of Jesus, you can’t either.

So my challenge today is this …

Choose life with Jesus first of all.  

Love in word and action.  Listen to others who may have grown up with a different view of life.  Look at the privileges and grace you’ve been given and offer that to others.

My husband wrote out of his heart tonight as wellPhilando Castile and the Things We White People Say.    You can read that HERE to keep the conversations that matter going.

Whatever you do, don’t stop here.  Keep choosing LIFE!

#Day19 ~ {Finding Life :: A 30-Day Challenge}


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