One Sunday a few years back, our service opened with a powerful worship set then went into a video clip. This video had no spoken words but as images moved across the screen and music played in the background, I was quickly drawn into this story about being held hostage by the words displayed on the screen.
In the video, someone had come to pay the debt for the person being held hostage. When the jailer went to tell the hostage he was free to go, the hostage declined. He had been there for too long. What once drove him mad, had become comfortable. “No thank you” came the response from the hostage as he shut the door to his cell. He chose to remain captive by the “false security” of the four walls around him.
What a powerful and compelling video.
Sometimes I think we do the same thing as Christians. We hold ourselves hostage. We accept Christ as our Savior and in so doing he sets us free from the sin that has held us “hostage” for so long. So why is it so hard for us to walk away from the chains of our sin?
I’ll tell you why. It’s because of the battle we fight in our mind. You know what I’m taking about don’t you? Those recordings that play over and over again in our head. Maybe one of those recordings comes from childhood “You’re not good enough.” “You’re not pretty enough.”
“Why can’t you be more like your brother / sister?” Or, perhaps it’s the friend that said, “Come on! It’s only one, what can it hurt?” It can also be those friends encouraging you to do “what’s best for you” even when it doesn’t line up with the truth of God’s word. Perhaps it’s someone very close to you questioning”can’t you do anything right?” So you believe yourself to be a failure at everything.
We think the words people closest to us say are the absolute truth for some reason, and we allow ourselves to be defined by them. No matter what old recording we have playing in the back of our head, we have to ask the Holy Spirit to OBLITERATE those recordings or Satan will use them to hold us hostage. Here is a visual object lesson that brought healing in me that I never imagined possible, I hope will do the same for you. I know we don’t know what God looks like, but just try to imagine God with a huge sledge hammer smashing all the negative recordings of your past to bits. You are a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17). Your past is GONE the moment you allow Christ into your heart!
It’s time for us to throw off the chains that hold us hostage, move out of our comfort zone and begin to walk in the freedom we have in Christ.
Jesus said in John 8:34-36 “I tell you the truth, everyone who lives in sin is a slave to sin. A slave does not stay with a family forever, but a son belongs to the family forever. So if the Son makes you free, you will be truly free.”