Michelangelo’s masterpiece David is in a gallery in Florence, Italy. Thousands of tourists wait for hours every day to get a glimpse. But many of them never notice the series of unfinished sculptures that line the corridor on the way to David. Their forms are identifiable – a hand here, a torso there. The statues were intended to adorn the tomb of Pope Julius ll, but they were never finished. It’s almost as if these sculptures are trying to break free and become what they were intended to be, but they are stuck in stone. Michelangelo called them captives. We can sometimes go through times of feeling like captives. We can’t seem to break free from habitual sins that hold us back. We know who we want to be, what we want to do, and where we want to go, but we can’t seem to make any progress in getting there. But no matter how long we’ve been stuck, God wants to finish what He started in our lives. Jesus said His mission was to set captives free (see Luke 4:18). We often tend to think of that statement in legalistic terms, as if salvation is a ‘get-out-of-jail-free’ card. But it’s much more than that. Maybe we should start to think of that statement in artistic terms. Salvation also comes to release the person we were destined to be before sin distorted the image of God in us. We’re held captive by our imperfections and insecurities, our guilt and anxieties. But Jesus died to set us free from all of that. And He doesn’t just set us free from who we were, He sets us free to become who we were meant to be.
If you’re feeling stuck in one place today, take a few minutes to think and pray about Jesus’ statement in Luke 4:18 that He came to set captives free.
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