Working Together With God For Your Freedom

Working Together With God For Your Freedom

Freedom is a metaphor used too often in Scripture for us to ignore. It’s not the only Biblical picture of what God does for us, but it helps us understand a great deal about redemption. There are a lot of ditches to be avoided when we talk about spiritual warfare. But the Bible has many examples and descriptions that help you understand more about working together with God for your freedom.

The most dramatic example of freedom in Scripture is the Exodus – the story of how God delivered His people Israel from bondage in Egypt and brought them to the Promised Land. It’s a real-life history lesson in how God works both cosmically in delivering human beings from the kingdom of darkness, and for us individually in bringing us to the Fully Alive life He calls us to.

When the children of Israel first came out of Egypt and were safely on the other side of the Red Sea, they sang the Song of Moses: “The LORD is a warrior; the LORD is His name.” (Exodus 15:3) They had seen Yahweh fight for them, using the plagues to get Pharaoh to open his tight fists and then destroying the Egyptian army in the Red Sea. Can’t you imagine the people shouting in wonder, “Wow! Our God fights for us!”

I think that’s the way we will feel when we sing the song of Moses and the Lamb in heaven. (Revelation 15:3)

But in moving toward freedom we don’t sit idly by doing nothing. We must be involved. As David said, “He trains my hands for battle.” (Psalm 18:34)

Collaborating With God

We don’t experience freedom by sitting back and waiting for God to magically “fix” things. We’re not the ones who “destroy the enemy,” but we have a role to play. God was the one who softened up Pharaoh and the Egyptians, but He did not instantly beam up the Israelites from Egypt into the Promised Land. They had things to do and things to learn. They had skin in the game. Without their active engagement nothing would happen.

For example, Moses had to go before Pharaoh and declare, “God says, Let My people go!” The Israelites had to kill the Passover lamb and place its blood on the doorways of their homes. They had to ask the Egyptians for their gold and silver, and then leave home with only a moment’s notice. They had to step into the path opened up in the Red Sea. They had to build the tabernacle when God showed Moses the pattern. And when they came to the Promised Land they had to actively fight to take possession of it.

Research in the last few years on spirituality and health demonstrates that both those people who take on the burden of fixing things themselves and those who sit back and wait for God or anyone else to fix things do equally poorly. Those who see themselves as working together with God, collaborating with Him, are the ones who come through challenges with resilience and wellbeing.

That’s the idea Paul talked about: “Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed– not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence– continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.” (Philippians 2:12-13) God works, and we work.

Follow His Lead

Sometimes we struggle with understanding what God’s part is and what our part is. Remember that you are not the one who destroys the enemy. God was the one who destroyed the Egyptian army. For us today, it’s not our job to defeat the devil; Jesus already fought him – and won!

Moses had to learn that the hard way. When he first went out to see the struggles of the Israelites he got angry – and killed just one Egyptian. (Exodus 2:11-12) I believe Moses sensed that God would use him in delivering Israel, but he rushed ahead of God’s leading and had to wait another 40 years before God could make another move.

That lesson was impressed on the children of Israel throughout their time in the wilderness. They only moved when the pillar of cloud and fire moved first. (Exodus 40:36-38) They had to follow God’s direction. He made the first move.

You and I need to do the same. We don’t rush headlong into spiritual battles and cry for God to come help us; that’s a sure way to get wounded – or worse. Instead, our first effort must be to discern where the Cloud is going. Where is God working, and where is He inviting us to follow? What is He putting His finger on in your life and inviting you to be transformed? Where in His kingdom is He doing something and inviting your involvement?

Practical Fighting Strategies

Consider these points in your own battle for freedom.

  1. What is your Pharaoh? What spiritual bondage is God stirring up a desire for freedom in your heart about? Poverty? Lust? Sadness and grief? Anxiety or depression? A broken relationship? Remember, you aren’t the one who destroys the enemy. But be ready when God sends you to say, “This is what the LORD says; Let My child go!”
  2. Don’t give in or give up. The Israelites repeatedly wanted to go back to Egypt when things became difficult. Your journey will not be without resistance. Determine that when the going gets tough, you will stand firm. The journey may take longer and be more convoluted than you at first realize. Just don’t quit.
  3. Follow the Cloud. When God tells you to do something, do it. When He says something to you, believe it. Watch for the next step God directs you to take, and follow Him regardless of how small, how crazy, or how impossible it seems.
  4. Be hungry to learn. It took time to undo the slave mentality the Israelites had when they left Egypt. You too will need to develop a mentality of freedom to be able to experience the Fully Alive life God calls you to. Be a voracious learner. Study God’s ways. Study healthy living, healthy thinking, healthy relationships. Keep on growing, always.

Refuse to remain comfortable in your bondage. Get involved in the process, working together with God. Watch for the Cloud, and follow Him into your freedom.

Your Turn: Where does the Biblical story of the Exodus relate to your own life? Where do you sense God asking you to follow Him into freedom now? Leave a comment below.

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  • In spiritual warfare you’re not the one who destroys the enemy. But there ARE things you must do in working together with God for your freedom. Don’t run ahead or lag behind; follow the Cloud closely.  Tweet that.

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Did this help you? Share with others and help them!

  • Janice Dunstan

    I have bad anxiety to the point
    Where I can’t leave my house at times. This process of overcoming it has now been 14 years. I have done what the doctor yell me. I have a Christian cousloir. I work hard everyday to get better. But this devotion about not be comfortable in my bondage kinda hot home for me. Sometimes and lately is seems to hard to move forward as the progress I have made have been small steps. I was reminded to not Quit in this devotion and stand firm . Today I commit myself to do so no matter what I feel or how bad it looks.thanks I believe this was for me today

    • Good to hear from you, Janice. Yes, Jesus wants you free! I’m glad you are working with a counselor. My prayers are with you today. May your heart be stirred to keep going. May God show you the next step to take in taking hold of the sound mind He has for you.
      You may also be interested in our 40 Days to Freedom from Fear and Anxiety email devotional series. If so, you can get them here: https://drcarolministries.lpages.co/leadbox/144249073f72a2%3A13eabd9e6746dc/5684961520648192/

    • Ruth Augustine

      I’m just like you Janice!! Praying for you!!!

      • Janice Dunstan

        Thankyou I will pray for you also Ruth

  • Ruth Augustine

    Thank you Dr. Carol I can see a lot of things in my life that I can use these steps encourage me to do, sometimes I wish I had that actual cloud to see but I know if I keep seeking the Lord it will get easier to see him working with me in my life. One thing I have not done is quit!! God Bless you!

    • Don’t ever quit, Ruth! And yes, the more we listen and follow the Lord, the easier it is to discern Him going forward. You will be in my prayers.

  • Lydia

    So many high points of wisdom here!! Like “This is what the LORD SAYS! Let my child GO!!” And we huddle, shivering, panicking, terrified to go!! Or we believe in the Lord who will make a path through the Sea and push over Jericho’s walls! Miracles happen for those who go!! This morning I spent hours listening to and encouraging a Grandma who is concerned for her beautiful college student granddaughter who was in an angry, violent scene in her apartment last night. The drunk boyfriend of her roommate so frightened her that she couldn’t study for finals today. She’s wanting to move out but doesn’t know where to go. And she won’t know until she takes steps to find a place! Life has to get bad enough before we’ll take action and then we regret waiting so long!! People are funny that way. Pain, bad pain, seems to be the only motivator to change! No wonder God allows, arranges, threatens, so much pain!! It’s the only way we’ll listen!! God bless you Dr Carol as you speak for Him!!

  • Scott

    I sometimes fall into masturbation when this temptation comes upon me. I have this image of a woman who I once thought (when I was deceived) was a female angelic being that was my wife. Thankfully I know the truth now, but sometimes when the image of this woman figure appears in my mind, often in a particular scenario with particular clothing and all these sexual kicks I become so inflamed with lust that I cannot control myself. After I fall and masturbate the next couple of days are usually hell, which makes me frightened of God. I pray to not fall into temptation so much, and yet this woman figure still won’t leave. There is a further added torment too. I think God might be telling me to fast to get deliverance – can’t be totally sure though because it feels like such a burden and have come to loathe it. The longest I have done it for is a day; I end up giving in after that. Thing is I am scared God might be getting angry with me because I am disobeying him in this, and so I feel condemned about it practically all the time. Please help, I am really struggling!

  • Neil Fumicelli

    I can honestly say that God is working on my situation daily. Even when I could see no further movement or progress, He made something happen that I never saw coming. I am so grateful to Jesus!!! I have been the worst drug addict in the past, so I was always going to jail and people would read about it in the paper. I hated to always be in the paper for an incarceration. Well, the day before yesterday, I finished working on a vehicle for a customer at the shop I work at. He called me at the last moment and asked if I would drive the vehicle in the Christmas parade. I was pretty excited to be given a chance to do something positive in the community, so I said yes. We ended up winning second place and will be given a trophy and have our pictures taken and put in the paper. I can’t believe this is happening! This will be my first time with my picture in the paper for something positive and not an incarceration! I give all the glory to Jesus Christ! He turned my life around! Thank you Jesus! 🙂

    • This is wonderful Neil! It’s just one more step showing you that God is working for your good future!