Freedom Ain’t Free!

I have often heard or read that most people are in favor of being freed from whichever person, situation or system that might hold them back from reaching their fullest potential in life. However, upon a closer look at what is actually desired to be freed from, and what are the byproducts of that type of freedom; some of us begin to have misgivings about saying that we are in favor of being free in general.

Especially when certain freedoms are seen as a hindrance to the perceived greater good of a group or belief system that we find ourselves part of, or we discover that a particular personal benefit is unavoidably dissolved when the person, situation or system has broken down because those formerly held in its grip are set free and the benefits which were gained from their bondage are lost.

For example, before this land, known as the U.S.A., became a sovereign nation, many slave owners wanted freedom from the oppressive rule of the Engish Empire, but didn't want the people they held against their will as slaves to be given that same freedom from their unjust and evil system of human trafficking. Somehow, one desire for freedom could not be understood to be as unjust as the other because it interfered with the slave owners' way of making them wealthy.

We may all want to be free from that which oppresses us but on the flip side of gaining that freedom are those who benefit from others' bondage and once it's known, they often can't help but to voice their opposition to that type of freedom.

There are similarities regarding the complexity of helping those who become free from their bondage and its consequences, to the account written in Acts 16:16-43. It's about a woman who was enslaved for the economic benefit of her captors and the imprisonment of Paul and Silas because they freed the woman from bondage, thus cancelling her captors' source of profit. As you read this passage, discover ways that other's freedom might possibly negate benefits that you enjoy. If so, how do you feel about that?

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