When Freedom Feels Foreign

“The Lord was very angry with your ancestors. Therefore tell the people: This is what the Lord Almighty says: ‘Return to me,’ declares the Lord Almighty, ‘and I will return to you,’ says the Lord Almighty.”

– Zechariah 1:2,3

After being away from their homeland for seventy years, King Darius of the great Persian Median Empire came in and set the Lord’s people free. It’s hard to imagine how shocked they were upon being told that they could go home, especially since their circumstances literally shifted overnight. Because they had fully settled in a foreign land — many of them even being born there — to suddenly have total liberty was a huge change. 

Yet in spite of having become comfortable in captivity, they seized their chance at freedom and embarked on a return journey to their native land. However, when they arrived, they beheld only a shadow of what once was. As they attempted to settle in, there were food problems, water problems, infrastructure problems, and governance problems, all of which made Jerusalem seem much more foreign than the place they left behind. In fact, the issues were so overwhelming that they didn’t know where to start. 

My friend, while you might have to dwell in a foreign land for a time, every season of captivity ultimately comes to an end. When it does, the key is to embrace your freedom. Though it’s easy to settle in the wilderness, God will not leave you there indefinitely. When you choose to get out of the boat of familiarity and move forward on the sea of uncertainty, the reward that awaits you will far outweigh the fear that precedes the leap of faith. Your Heavenly Father wants to do more than you can ask for or imagine through your future, so have courage and trust Him to lead you to His very best! 

Prayer


Jesus, fill my life with faith so I can embrace my freedom and move into your very best me.

Reflection


Why might it be scary to embrace freedom after years of captivity?

If you’re unable to attend your local church or need some additional weekly inspiration, be sure to tune into Hour of Power online at hourofpower.org/episode.