the path to freedom

freedom

Written by KrisCamealy

As a sequin-wearing, homeschooling, mops-coordinating mother of four, Kris Camealy is passionate about Jesus and her family. Her heart beats to share the hard, but glorious truth about  life in Christ with anyone who will listen. When she's not writing, she gobbles up books like they're going out of print and plays in the kitchen. She's been known to take gratuitous pictures of her culinary creations, causing mouths to water all across Instagram. Once upon a time, she ran 10 miles for Compassion International, a ministry for which she serves as an advocate. You can read more of her heart-words in her new book, Holey, Wholly, Holy: A Lenten Journey of Refinement, and on her blog Kris Camealy.com.

July 22, 2013

I sit in quiet and wait. Though I’ve been nagging God for answers and insight, He remains silent on a particular issue I keep bringing before Him. I’m puzzling over the questions I’m asking–are they the right ones?  Is my focus in the wrong place? Maybe. And some days, yes.

freedom

But whether I like it or not , I am on a journey of His choosing–or at least, by His allowance.  I’m in the desert with everything that implies.

It’s lonely.

It’s quiet.

My feet hurt and my heart sits like a stone wedged between my lungs. I’m certain there is a shorter way than this to freedom from this burden. There has to be–

When Pharaoh let the people go, God did not lead them by way of the land of the Philistines, although that was near. For God said, “Lest the people change their minds when they see war and return to Egypt.” But God led the people around by the way of the wilderness toward the Red Sea. And the people of Israel went up out of the land of Egypt equipped for battle. (Exodus 13:17-18, ESV)

Sometimes, God leads by way of the wilderness. Sometimes, He deliberately chooses the long way.

Rarely do I want this, but it’s the best route to freedom from my struggles, because God sees the whole picture.

The Israelites were nearsighted. When their bellies roared and their mouths dried up in the desert, slavery back in Egypt suddenly looked like a better option. I get that. I think that way too. We paint the past with pinky-shades of perfection when the gray unknown lies ahead. 

Walter Hitchcock said, “freedom isn’t free”. He’s right. Freedom is paid for with blood-currency:

For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.(Galatians 5:17 ESV)

So while I’m kicking stones here in the desert, waiting on God to answer, I’m reminded that this path, this long-way-around-my-elbow to get to a place where I can feel relief from this heart-burden, is intentional.

Who knows what discouragement God protects us from when He calls us into the wastelands of waiting. Freedom is already ours–Christ has paid the debt.

I’m clinging to this, repeating this truth to myself, For you, O LORD, have delivered my soul from death, my eyes from tears, my feet from stumbling. (Psalm 116:8)

Join the conversation on Mondays in July as the writers of Living the Story explore the facets of living FREE from the lens of our own experiences. Was it a moment of guidance or direction, a season of love, a time of healing or rebirth when you experienced true freedom? We want to hear about your encounters too.

Mark your calendar! On July 29, we welcome Heather Kopp, author of Sober Mercies: How Love Caught Up With a Christian Drunk, as our guest writer with an opportunity to win her new book.

 

20 Comments

  1. robyn

    I think God is teaching me this too – that the easy way isn’t always His way, and it’s up to me to be willing to embrace the hard, painful, so-worth-the-trial path through the desert, if that is where I’ll find true worship.

    “Let my people go, so that they may worship me in the wilderness” Ex. 7:16

    Thanks for the challenging and encouraging post today, Kris.

    Reply
    • Kris Camealy

      Yes, I love that scripture from Exodus, we are called to worship IN the wilderness. Thank you for reading and encouraging me!!

      Reply
  2. Sheila Seiler Lagrand

    That Psalm is perfect, Kris. Not “you, O LORD, will deliver my soul” but “HAVE delivered.” I’m clinging to that!

    Reply
    • Kris Camealy

      Clinging with you, Sheila. Bless you, my friend.

      Reply
  3. Michele-Lyn

    I love this…”Who knows what discouragement God protects us from when He calls us into the wastelands of waiting.” I remember going through a completely unexpected and unwanted desert wilderness, only to realize it was God’s preservation and He was actually delivering me from being in bondage, bondage I was unaware of at the time. His way is so much higher than our own. What truth in your post, Kris!

    Reply
    • Kris Camealy

      I know this resonates for you–I have watched your journey, and seen God move. So blessed to walk beside you in all of these things. ((hugs))

      Reply
  4. ro elliott

    It’s a growing trust in God’s love….a love that longs to see His children free… A love that suffers long with us…a love that never leaves or forsakes…a love that shepherds us through this journey…leading us from good pasture to good pasture where our souls are filled and nourished…sometimes as we move from one pasture to another…the way may be long and grueling…but the good Shepherd never leaves His sheep untended …. Psalm 23 …blessings and grace as you travel this road with the One who tends to your soul.

    Reply
    • Kris Camealy

      Thank you, Ro. Even in His silence, I know He walks beside me. I know that He is intentional in all His doings. I trust Him–oh how I’m learning to trust! Bless you, my friend.

      Reply
  5. Linda@Creekside

    ‘my heart sits like a stone wedged between my lungs.’ oh yes, I have been there, too Kris. and then slowly but surely, He gives air, space, presence, peace.

    Reply
    • Kris Camealy

      Praying for you, Linda. May you be encouraged!

      Reply
  6. Cara Sexton

    Pondering on taking the long, slow road to wholeness and holiness. Love this, Kris.

    Reply
    • Kris Camealy

      Thanks, Cara. I am praying for you as you retreat a bit. I pray you hear His whispers, and enjoy His presence.

      Reply
  7. Diane Bailey

    “We paint the past with pinky-shades of perfection when the gray unknown lies ahead.” This is so very true! Don’t we all, at times, recall the past as more beautiful, and more perfect, when we are facing the unknown future? Good job, Kris.

    Reply
    • Kris Camealy

      Thanks, Diane, your encouragement is a great blessing to me!

      Reply
  8. kelli woodford

    A masterful, heart-felt telling of your desert story, Kris. Perhaps we can all relate on some level – living in the messy middle of the here below.

    I’m especially nodding my head at this:
    “We paint the past with pinky-shades of perfection when the gray unknown lies ahead.”
    oh, how certainty draws us, even if it’s certain slavery. so very true.

    Reply
    • Kris Camealy

      It’s such comfort being understood, Kelli. Thank you for making me feel *normal* in my wanderings, and for always turning me to Jesus.

      Reply
  9. Amy Hunt

    I am reminded of a quote I heard the other day about how sometimes the waiting place is His most productive place. He uses it to grow our capacity to trust Him. And indeed, always proves faithful in His sustaining us. With you, sweet soul-sister.

    Reply
    • Kris Camealy

      He IS always faithful. It’s such grace the way he stands by, bends low, and dusts us off. I am eternally grateful for Mercy.

      Reply
  10. Paula Leach Gamble

    This is exactly what I needed to hear! God is way more patient with me than I am with me & it makes me have to surrender & trust His way in His time. “Sometimes, God leads by way of the wilderness. Sometimes, He deliberately chooses the long way. Rarely do I want this, but it’s the best route to freedom from my struggles, because God sees the whole picture.” That is awesome!

    Reply
    • Kris Camealy

      So thankful you were encouraged, Paula. Bless you for saying so. ((hugs))

      Reply

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the path to freedom

by KrisCamealy time to read: 2 min
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