Freedom is a noun.

Freedom means being exempt from external control.

Christ preached freedom, lived freedom, and offered freedom to all.

We have the opportunity to live into the freedom of Jesus Christ and also the responsibility to work toward ensuring others may live into their God-given freedom. Let the Spirit move in, around, and through you today, that you might live freely in Christ our Lord.

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You teach me the way of life. In your presence is total celebration. Beautiful things are always in your right hand.

Psalm 16:11

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I think birthdays are so much fun! It’s a blast to celebrate our friends and family and make them feel special for a day. And sometimes, when we’re busy celebrating someone else, we don’t even realize we’re not thinking about ourselves – what a freeing experience! I personally spend a lot of time picking out what I think is the best possible gift I could find for the birthday girl or boy, because I love seeing the happiness on their faces when they enjoy my gift.

In a life with God we have the opportunity for unending celebration. God celebrates us, we celebrate each other, joy abounds, and we learn new ways to be in celebration with one another. However, it’s also our responsibility to share with others what God’s freely shared with us: invite someone to join the celebration, work toward helping them find peace and joy, fight for their equality as God’s creation. When God’s children are free, beautiful things happen.

Katie Barrett Todd

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Spirit of all that lives, breathe in me today so that I may experience the joy of life as a Child of God. Stir me to bring others to a place of celebration, and help me work to increase the beauty of a life of freedom for everyone. Humbly I ask, amen.

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South African freedom hero Nelson Mandela said: “For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.”

Freedom requires us to live so that all may be free. Christ’s freedom is not for one person, but for every person.

Go today into the world and fight for the freedom of another.

Go today to let the world taste the unending love of Christ through loving your neighbor.

And go today letting the Spirit change your motivations. Live free, and fight for freedom.

Katie Barrett Todd

Rev. Katie Barrett Todd is Associate University Minister at Nebraska Wesleyan University and an ordained Teaching Elder in the Presbyterian Church (USA). She holds a M.Div and MACE from Union Presbyterian Seminary in Charlotte, North Carolina. Katie has served churches and campus ministries in South Carolina, North Carolina, and Kentucky. She currently resides in Lincoln, Nebraska with her husband, a youth and young adult pastor in a local congregation, and her two toddler children.

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