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When my children were young, we took them to see a small traveling circus that came to town. It was my first time going to a circus too, although I had seen them before on television. I was probably as enthralled as the kids watching the flying trapeze artists as they did all kinds of flips and tricks in the air. I am afraid of heights, so watching them perform these stunts so far off the ground was thrilling and terrifying.

The kids seemed to like the acts that included animals. They squealed when the lions jumped through hoops and the lion tamer cracked his whip. The elephants stole the show though when they came out in a parade. There were several huge elephants that walked out into the ring following each other, and then a small young elephant calf brought up the rear. The calf was adorable and seemed to be enjoying all of the applause.

It was years later that I learned some of the ways that the animals were trained. I read an article that talked about the cruelty the animals suffered at the hands of their trainers. According to PETA, some used whips, chains, and muzzles to teach them tricks. I just thought the whip was a theatrical part of the performance. Although I hadn’t given it much thought, I guess I thought they were trained with treats like we train our dogs.

The young elephant calf that I thought was so cute, was probably tethered to a heavy chain. Elephants are extremely strong animals and could refuse to do the bidding of their trainers at any time. However, since they are trained from a young age that a heavy chain will contain them, they don’t know it is now in their power to break free.

John 8:36

36 So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.

How many of us are like the elephants? How many are held back by chains of the past that no longer have power over us? It is hard to let go of the things in the past that caused us pain, but we are no longer living in the past. The past left scars, and we all have those marks, but they have healed. We lived through the hurts, disappointments, and pain, and we have the scars that remind us of how far we have come. Instead of looking at the scars through eyes of hatred, maybe we should look at them as reminders that we are no longer in that life; it is behind us.

Psalms 107:14

14 He brought them out of darkness, the utter darkness, and broke away their chains.

The chains have been broken, and you are free. You might still have scars, but you have been set free. Don’t be like the elephant whose memory of the chains will keep him in bondage. The Lord set us free from the pain of the past, so let’s rejoice in His loving Grace.

Here is one of my favorite songs by Lauren Daigle that reminds me of this message.

To God Goes The Glory!

Have A Blessed Day!

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