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Faith Comment published in the Petersfield Post

27 November 2013: Patsy Robinson, Petersfield Methodist Church

Being free

One beautiful morning in July, we took our daughter's dogs for a walk in the New Forest. The sky was already blue, the air had a slight refreshing chill, and the breeze brought with it the promise of another sunny day. Perfect.

Reaching the village green we unleashed the four dogs so that they could hurry off and explore. Three of them immediately trotted off as usual, noses to the ground, following interesting scents towards the surrounding trees. I straightened up and breathed deeply, simply enjoying being in such a place on such a glorious day. But looking down I realised that one of the dogs was just standing there; for some reason he didn't realise that he'd been freed.

And aren't we all like that sometimes? As if a wide grassy common surrounds us, there's a forest to explore, and we stand rooted to the spot, afraid, and acting as though we were still bound, as though nobody had unclipped our lead.

But Somebody has freed us.

Think of that clunk that you hear when you use your car's central locking. Imagine that you've just walked back to the car park, pressed the button on your key fob, and 'clunk' the doors unlock, ready for you to get in and drive away.

When Jesus died, it's as though he then unlocked our doors, unclipped our leads. Nobody knows how, we only know why, but the fact is that he dealt with our wrongness; he dealt with death itself. So when we trust him with our lives, we can be really free.

And why did he do it? Because he really, really cares.

This article was submitted for publication in the Petersfield Post on 27 November; it is possible that it was published earlier or may be published later.

Petersfield Museum: Beliefs – Religion and Spirituality in Petersfield and Beyond exhibition closes on Saturday 30th November

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