Wednesday, 5th Week of Lent
“The truth will set you free.”
Discipleship brings us four freedoms: freedom from fear, freedom from self, freedom from other people, and freedom from sin.
First, discipleship brings us freedom from fear. (William Barclay)Certainly, we have so many fears – fear of failure and rejection, fear of the unknown and unfamiliar, fear of being abandoned and alone. Yet, once we follow Jesus, we will never have to walk alone, we walk forever in the company of Jesus, thus, we are freed from the fear of rejection and abandonment.
Second, discipleship brings us freedom from self. Our ego – with its pride, greed, and ambition – makes us slaves of ourselves and prevents or hinders us from becoming the best that we can be. Only the power and presence of Jesus can re-create us… only him can transform us.
Third, discipleship brings us freedom from other people. Sometimes (if not oftentimes) we allow ourselves to be dominated by the fear of what other people might say or think about us; we allow them to dictate on us what we should say or do, or how we should act or behave. But the true disciple is someone who has ceased to care about what others say, because he or she thinks only of what God says.
Fourth, discipleship brings us freedom from sin. We cannot overemphasize the fact that sin or evil has the power to enslave us. Once we are enslaved, we could not refuse it anymore. However, discipleship breaks the chains which bind us, and it enables us to be the persons that God intended us to be.
“The truth will set you free.” What is this “truth that makes us free” that Jesus is referring to? Well, the most comprehensive way to put it is that the truth which Jesus brings shows us the real values of life. And once we have embraced and lived Jesus’ values, we will know and experience true freedom.
One basic question we must ask is: To what am I to give my life? To my job, career, profession, or business? To earning money and accumulating possessions? To indulging in worldly entertainment and pleasures? Or to serving God and neighbor? In the light of the truth of Jesus, we are able to see the things that are really important and, thus, enhance our freedom.
“If you remain in my word, you will truly be my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”