May the peace of Christ be with you today. Most people, and particularly we Americans, place great value on freedom. As Americans, we deeply appreciate the sacrifices that many have made to preserve our freedom and we treasure that symbol of freedom, our flag. But where does our greatest freedom come from? What truly sets us free?
The three men in the furnace in the Book of Daniel symbolize those individuals who really know where their freedom comes from. While these individuals did suffer what appears to be physical destruction, the eternal — the permanent part of themselves, the most important part — that is their embodied soul was unharmed and preserved. Their saving grace was that they ultimately knew God was in control and that they would be preserved from harm. This is precisely the truth that Jesus refers to today that makes us free. When we are able to fully trust that God is with us and that He walks with us through any calamity — even this virus — we are then free of the fear and the worry that robs us of joy and peace.
This is not always easy to do. If you’re afraid, go to the Lord in prayer and ask for his grace and his courage. Recall the many ways that he has brought you through tragedy and difficulty up to this point in time. God’s love never fails. It will not fail us now. May the love, courage, and protection of God be with you today, with those you love, and with our world. In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen.