The Price of Freedom

The Price of Freedom

Freedom.

A blissful thought, but sometimes more elusive than we’d like to admit. I think that every human  is bound by many things—some unnamed and others less elusive—but I think we as women have different types of bonds.

We can be bound by society and standards no woman could hope to achieve.

This is prevalent in every culture, though it may look very different depending on where you live. Here in America the “ideal woman” is plastered everywhere. She looks great in a bikini, has perfect hair, and embodies the word “hot”. This girl gets what she wants, has men fawning after her, and always finds the perfect pair of jeans.

But this woman is a myth. A lie. There is no “ideal woman” body type, hair color, eye color, or bra size. There is no physical look that makes you a better woman than someone else, because standards cannot be limited to outward appearance.

But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.

– 1 Samuel 16:7

God told Samuel that what man looks at is foolish and, when in the business of picking kings, God told him it’s more important to look at the heart. Placing foolish standards on women (and men too!) only ensures that someone will not match up to those standards.

Holding yourself to society’s standards of beauty will only lead to disappointment.

We can be bound by our own ideas and standards for ourselves.

Oh my. I cannot stress this enough. We bind ourselves up by our own standards and ideals. Sometimes these standards are born out of society’s portrayed image of “perfect” and sometimes they are fashioned by ourselves. Either way, they are dangerous.

As a photographer, I see this all the time. We are our own worst critics! I’m in no way saying it’s bad to work out or take time to do your makeup or hair—by all means, work hard, eat healthy, and look your best—but please do not hold yourself to a standard you were never meant to fulfill. Ask those around you—those you love and trust—and then believe them.

Holding yourself to unrealistic standards will only lead to disappointment.

We can be bound by love and God’s standards for us.

I know we don’t tend to think of God’s love and standards for us as “bindings”, but I believe they are.

Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.

– Matthew 11:28-30 (emphasis mine)

In this well known passage we see that there is an action to giving our burdens to Christ—Jesus tell us to take His yoke because it is easy. It’s paradoxical to think of, but the reality is that being bound by Christ’s love and standards for our lives is the only way that we will truly be free.

The Price of Freedom by Emilie Hendryx | Putting On The New BlogTo recognize that, no matter what society says or what we tell ourselves, we are God’s child, made in His image, and called as His children to live our lives for him. Yes, it is a yoke to bear, but it is one that He gives us strength for. It is the price of freedom.

And after all of this, what does he promise us? Rest. Isn’t that exactly what we need? Were running around like crazy trying to please everyone (including ourselves) when the only One we need to worry about pleasing is Christ.

Holding yourself to God’s standards and focusing on His love for you will lead to freedom.

May you find rest and freedom in these truths, dear friends.

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Emilie Hendryx About Emilie Hendryx

Emilie is a freelance writer, photographer, and graphic designer living in Dayton, Ohio. She’s a member of ACFW and writes Young Adult fiction. In her spare time, you can find her designing fun bookish items for her Etsy and Society6 shops all while drinking too much coffee.
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Comments

  1. Excellent post!

    [Reply]

  2. Thanks so much Penny!

    [Reply]

  3. Great advice, Emilie. I have trouble with my struggle for perfection, and that comes from culture, not always from God.

    [Reply]

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