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‘We’ll fall short on our own’


CHERYL HAREWOOD

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WE MUST NOT continue to accuse and condemn ourselves when God is willing to set us free. What we must do is commit in faith to follow God; to allow Him to lead our lives, because on our own we will surely fall short.
It was the sixth Sunday after Pentecost last week and Reverend Dr Frank Marshall CBE, Dean of St Michael’s Cathedral, was addressing the congregation at St Mary’s Anglican Church.
Among those in the congregation as Marshall dealt with freedom and its relationship to love, were the chairman, directors, management and staff of the Signia Financial Group, who were marking the company’s tenth year in business.
In his message, Marshall sought to express the fact that true liberty always takes love into consideration and one should not lock oneself into guilt while trying to score points with God by observing the law or performing good deeds.
He noted: “More [so] than we realize, humans lock themselves in by establishing a score sheet to merit points for themselves, presuming to do more than is within their mere natural capability and invariably passing themselves off as better, the one over the other.”
He stressed that keeping the law “cannot lift our burdens” but merely leaves us with a sense of inadequacy.
He said that freedom from the law was found in the fact that Jesus has aligned Himself with our humanity, taking the burden of humanity’s weakness and sinfulness upon Himself.
Marshall cautioned, however, “We must be careful lest we take such loving kindness for granted, to a point where we become presumptuous and reckless, where we say that God will take care of our failures, so we act in disregard and fail to be honourable and responsible.”
Taking his text from Galatians 5:13-14, Marshall read: “For you were called to freedom, brothers and sisters; only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for self-indulgence, but through love become slaves to one another. For the whole law is summed up in a single commandment, “You shall love your neighbour as yourself.”
He said that freedom, like love, “is probably one of the most topical subjects discussed by communities across the world or occupying the thoughts and aspirations of persons”.
The preacher pointed out, however, that “love often eludes people”.
“The same thing would happen to freedom,” he added, “for deep within the human breast is that yearning for an experience of life which confers on persons the feeling of worth and accomplishment, which allows them to soar, to rise above the hardship”.
Marshall also said “the real experience of freedom is that which operates or is realized at a critical point at which one feels one has broken through – a point at which one may feel empowered”.
He said that “while God has set us free”, the preservation of this freedom rests with our taking an example from Him, as Jesus lived and acted within the purpose of God.
During the service Paul Ashby, Signia Financial Group CEO, made a cash donation to the church’s youth ministry and lauded Signia’s staff for their commitment and dedication through the years.
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