For those of you who were not able to sign up in time for the 2019 spring devotional series...here is a little snippet I wanted to share with you from "Day One".
I hope it blesses you!
(From Day One of the "Breaking Chains" Email Devotional Series)
The Caged Bird
The Passage: Acts 16:22-23 NIV
The crowd joined in the attack against Paul and Silas, and the magistrates ordered them to be stripped and beaten with rods. After they had been severely flogged, they were thrown into prison, and the jailer was commanded to guard them carefully.
Sometimes we are wrongly accused, and sometimes rightly so...
by what we have done
what we didn't do
what we could never do
what we should do
what we want to do
what we feel
what we have suffered
what we have done to cause others to suffer
Those accusations and sufferings, from ourselves and from others, are often the prisons in which our chains are eventually fastened to.
Jesus tells us in John 10:10, "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full."
The real thief is not the one who is being flogged.
The real thief steals hope. Steals freedom. The real thief is the one, the thing, that throws us into the prison...
Did you know that many birds that are caged have clipped wings so that they cannot fly? Many of those that are bred to be sold, have their wings clipped at an early age. Their wings are often trimmed and cut in a certain way that causes unbalanced flight. It not only keeps them captive to their perch but also ends up teaching them not to rely on their wings.
Maya Angelou wrote a poem called, "Caged Bird". A few lines of this poem really stood out to me:
"The caged bird sings
with a fearful trill
of things unknown
but longed for still
and his tune is heard
on the distant hill
for the caged bird
sings of freedom."
The caged bird.
We can be that caged bird, can't we?
Caged. Imprisoned. Flogged. Beat. Before the chains are even put on.
Longing for something, perhaps unknown, to break us from the prison we are in.
Longing for a freedom our heart tells us exists, but perhaps seems out of reach.
That longing exists because we believe the lies.
That longing exists because we believe we are stuck on our perch.
We forget the promises.
Our wings are clipped.
The "real thief" clips our wings, to unbalance our flight;our faith. Trimming here and there, impressioning upon us the message that we can't fly. That we are stuck on our perch. That our wings cannot be relied upon.
And there is truth to that. Why? Because our own wings will never make us fly or break us out of the cage or the prison we are in.
But the good news? We are not birds. We are not bound by physical wings that cannot be grown back. We are not bound, because we have other wings that are not our own. No, we are not birds. We are children of God. And we are given new wings. And those wings are Christ.
The prisons in our own lives, whether a place you spend a little or a lot of time in, or a place you visit when no one is looking...there is nothing of God there, friend. Rewrite the message your clipped wings have taught you.
True freedom comes with truly believing with our hearts that Christ's redemptive work on the cross covers all we have done or will do- ALL of it.
True freedom comes when we believe that we are not who the world says we are, or who the thief tries to convince us we are, but rather we are who Christ says we are.
So if you are there, just thrown into a "prison" of this life; wings recently clipped, or if you have been awaiting trial there on your perch for quite some time...I hope you will join me again tomorrow as we dig a little deeper into those chains that get fastened in those prisons...
Today is the day to no longer let the thief steal what Christ has already given you: new wings, freedom, and a way to break the chains
Believe and know the promises each of us are given...
Begin to write them on your heart today.
We are promised
God will fight for us
God gives strength to the weary
Those who hope in the Lord will soar on wings of eagles
God helps us
We are not alone
God's love for us cannot be shaken
God's Word is not chained
2 Timothy 2:9
There is release from darkness for prisoners
When we submit ourselves to God, and resist the devil, he will flee
God forgives and purifies us when we confess our sin
1 John 1:9
When we pray He hears us
2 Chronicles 7:14
The Lord goes before us
We are loved
We will be free indeed
*If you would like to sign up to receive future devotional studies, click below!
The next devotional series starts in October-more info to come soon.
Wife. Mother. Writer. Photographer. Child of God. Encouraging others in faith through a lens of grace and seeing beauty in the ashes.
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