Sin will always keep you longer than you wanted to stay, make you pay more than you ever wanted to pay, and take you further than you ever intended to go.
 
-My friend Blaine Bartel
  
  
A few years ago I ran across a story that still moves me every time I read it.  The story is re-counted in Steve Brown’s riveting book, A Scandalous Freedom. 
  
Abraham Lincoln went to a slave market.  There he noted a young, beautiful African-American woman being auctioned off to the highest offer.  He bid on her and won.  He could see the anger in the young woman’s eyes and could imagine what she was thinking, ‘another white man will buy me, use me, and then discard me’. 
 
As Lincoln walked off with his ‘property’, he turned to the woman and said, ‘You’re free’.  ‘Yeah.  What does that mean?’ she replied.  ‘It  means that you’re free.’  ‘Does it mean I can say whatever I want to say?’  ‘Yes,’ replied Lincoln, smiling, ‘it means you can say whatever you want to say.’  ‘Does it mean,’ she asked incredulously, ‘that I can be whatever I want to be?’  ‘Yes, you can be whatever you want to be.’  ‘Does it mean,’  the young woman said hesitantly, ‘that I can go wherever I want to go?’  ‘Yes, it means you are free and you can go wherever you want to go.’ 
 
‘Then,’ said the woman with tears welling up in her eyes, ‘I think I’ll go with you.’ 
 
Brown continues…
  
That is what God has done for us.  It is what the Christian faith is all about.  We have been bought with a price, the price of God’s own Son.  We now have a new master, one who, once he paid the price, set us free. 
  
Do you realize that you are free?  Jesus never twists our arm—and he never does a hard-sell on us.  He simply sets us free and lets us decide what we will do with that freedom.  The question each of us must answer is: Will we turn and walk away—or will we, like the slave girl—follow him? 
   
 36 So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.   (John 8:36, ESV)
   
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