As we journey through life, we are often shackled by metaphorical chains that hold us back, tie us down, or slow our progress.

However, we find in God’s abundant love and grace the hope that can free us.

So raise your hands high, liberated to receive the many gifts God has for you.

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When the swineherds saw what had happened, they ran off and told it in the city and in the country. Then people came out to see what had happened, and when they came to Jesus, they found the man from whom the demons had gone sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed and in his right mind. And they were afraid. Those who had seen it told them how the one who had been possessed by demons had been healed. Then all the people of the surrounding country of the Gerasenes asked Jesus to leave them; for they were seized with great fear. So he got into the boat and returned.

Luke 8:34-37

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Our fear can be the chain that holds us down and hinders us from living in the fullness of the grace and love of God. Like the crowd that saw the demon-possessed man healed, we let our fear drive us further away from basking in the radiance of the love of Christ.

Messages of hate and divisiveness that sometimes come from the Christian community all stem from a deep-rooted fear of the unknown and what we do not understand. The sooner we learn to trust God and the power of God’s grace and love made available to us through Christ Jesus, the sooner we can appreciate the beauty and mystery of the diverse world that God has created.

It is this love of God through Jesus that has the ability to drive away our fears and give us hope for freedom from our chains.

James Blay

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God, in the midst of my fears, help me to appreciate that you, O God, are right there with me. Amen.

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Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And all of us, with unveiled faces, seeing the glory of the Lord as though reflected in a mirror, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another; for this comes from the Lord, the Spirit.

2 Corinthians 3:17-18

James Blay

James Himie Blay is a Liberian and works as servant leadership coordinator at Ricks Institute in Virginia, Liberia. He is a 2012 graduate of Mercer University and a prospective (Fall 2013) student of the McAfee School of Theology. James has worked several summers in different capacities with Passport summer camps.

The Love of God

Ken Medema

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