free·dom:   1: the quality or state of being free: as a: the absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice or action b: liberation from slavery or restraint or from the power of another
   
-Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary
 
  
Alright—we’ve been on this topic of freedom for a few days now and there must be a couple of dissenters wondering when I am going to hurry up and get back to the truth.  Well, I hate to disappoint anyone, but the message of freedom is the simple truth of God’s Word and any counter-message is a lie.  
  
How often we compromise our freedom and settle for some cheap imitation—we were not meant to live like some torpid chicken on a fast-track to slaughter, beak and feet removed, wings clipped off, steroid injected, anti-biotic ridden, disease infested—and force fed through a hose.  That’s a picture of what religion can do to us when we get caught up in it’s web.  It chokes everything that has the potential to be alive right out of us. 
   
  My counsel is this: Live freely, animated and motivated by God’s Spirit. Then you won’t feed the compulsions of selfishness. For there is a root of sinful self-interest in us that is at odds with a free spirit, just as the free spirit is incompatible with selfishness. These two ways of life are antithetical, so that you cannot live at times one way and at times another way according to how you feel on any given day. Why don’t you choose to be led by the Spirit and so escape the erratic compulsions of a law-dominated existence?   (Galatians 5:16-18, The Message Bible)  
        
God’s design is that we are to be able to move and roam about, sort of like free-range chickens are apt to do.  Healthy-active-organic chickens cost a bit more down at the corner market and taste far better on the barbecue for a reason—they are raised the way chickens were meant to be raised. 
   
Being caged up by religion isn’t the life for you and me.  
     
And we can’t very well follow Jesus if we are all couped up by religion like frustrated mass-production chickens.
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