By Candy Arrington @CandyArrington
As a writer, I’ve always wondered what it was like to pen something as significant and monumental as the Declaration of Independence. Did Thomas Jefferson welcome the challenge? Did sentences form in his head faster than he could dip quill to ink pot? Or did he sit and stare at blank parchment, as he considered the magnitude of what he was about to write?
His mother’s family was one of the most prominent in Virginia. He studied at the College of William and Mary to prepare for the practice of law. Jefferson entered the Virginia House of Burgesses just as the rumble of opposition to British taxation was increasing, and in 1774, he wrote a pamphlet about the rights of British Americans.
At the second Continental Congress, in June of 1776, Jefferson was appointed to a 5-member committee, along with John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Robert Livingston, and Roger Sherman. Although an awkward speaker, Jefferson had already distinguished himself as a gifted writer and was chosen to draft the Declaration of Independence by the other committee members, who read, made suggestions, and agreed to the document before it was presented. Jefferson, however, was the primary author.
Moses was also a freedom leader. Like Thomas Jefferson, he was a son of privilege, the adopted son of the Egyptian Pharaoh’s daughter. Both Jefferson and Moses had issues with verbal communication, but as is often the case, had strengths in other areas.
Like Jefferson and Moses, all leaders possess strengths and weaknesses. They also had huge failures: Moses committed murder. Jefferson was a slave owner. Yet God used these faulty men to further the cause of freedom.
God may not have given you an assignment like penning a document that alters the course of history, but your task may still involve leading captives—those living in bondage to sin, shame, and guilt—to freedom by sharing the Good News of the Gospel.
“It was for freedom that Christ set us free,” Paul wrote the Galatians (5:1 NASB).. Thanks to the saving work of Jesus, we were set from the condemnation that our sinfulness would have earned us (Romans 8:1). We were released from the yoke of sin, which previously ruled our hearts, will, and minds (Romans 6:8-14). We were rescued from death and raised with Christ to live forever (Colossians 2:12). We are free to rest in the work of Christ and know there is nothing we can do to add to His gift of salvation (Ephesians 2:8-9).
This is freedom worth sharing to those still living in bondage. And like Jefferson and Moses, God can use us even with our weakness and failures to give the news to everyone who will listen. The greatest liberty one can experience is the freedom we receive when we believe and are given salvation through Him.
If the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. John 8:36 NIV
About the author: Candy Arrington has written hundreds of articles and devotionals, often on tough topics. Her books include AFTERSHOCK: Help, Hope, and Healing in the Wake of Suicide (B & H) and When Your Aging Parent Needs Care: Practical Help for This Season of Life (Harvest House). Candy is a native South Carolinian, who gains writing inspiration from historic architecture, vintage photographs, nature, and the application of Biblical principles to everyday life. Learn more about Candy at www.CandyArrington.com, where you can also read her blog, Forward Motion: Moving Beyond What Holds You Back.
Candy’s book, When Your Aging Parent Needs Care, is a help to those who face the special effort of caring for a parent. It provides support and direction to enable the caregiver to be spiritually, physically, and emotionally prepared for the day to day challenges they face.
Join the conversation: For what freedoms are you thankful on this holiday?