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Presidential Blessing: May 14

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Greetings from beautiful Kelowna!



Pastor Brake and I are participating in the Okanagan Regional Camp Meeting this weekend. It started last night with a powerful message from Elder Brad Thorp – minute man, who stepped up for Elder Jim Nix, whose flight was delayed & will be here today. The saints are happy and looking forward to the spiritual activities of this gathering, including a participation from Burman University. Talk about alignment! Please pray for rich spiritual blessings in the lives of all participants & attendees of this Camp Meeting today. 

As I sat together with our brothers and sisters last evening, I felt good and “proud” to belong to the Adventist Christian family. There were children, young, and more experienced people. They were all together in the OKAA auditorium with one goal and purpose: To worship our Creator God. What a privilege we still have to do that in an environment that protects the freedom of religion. Freedom – this is a “commodity” so much desired by many of God’s children around the globe. One just needs to do a quick scan through the world map to realize that... However, because we are so much used to it, sometimes we forget to give thanks to God for experiencing it so abundantly in our country. We have the freedom to come and go, express ourselves, do things, and especially worship according to our conscience.
 
There are many messages of freedom in the Bible. The first promise of freedom is actually found in Gen. 3:15 with the assurance of freedom from sin – a new element for humanity – through the Messiah. Of course, the Scriptures also present the Israelites’ freedom from the bondage of slavery in Egypt, highlighted in the destruction of the oppressive forces drowned into the Red Sea (Exo. 14:15-31). Then, it mentions the freedom that God’s Law brings to the believers in Christ (Psalm 119:44-45; James 1:25). Moreover, God’s Word, in all of its books, introduces the real freedom that can only be achieved in Christ (Gal. 2:19-20) and it is also beautifully presented by Paul: “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” II Cor. 5:17 NIV. The main reason for Jesus’ incarnation and ministry on earth (and in Heaven) was (is) “to seek and save what was lost.” (Luke 19:10). Jesus came to bring freedom to the captives of sin (Isa.61:1; Luke 4:17-19). This message is also so fitting to the freedom of worshipping God on His day – Sabbath, a day of release and freedom.
 
My prayer for all of us today is that we value and appreciate the message of freedom found in Christ, alone! Let us also join in prayer for those who live in oppressed places where they cannot express such freedom as we do, and especially for those whom we are commissioned by God to share life’s real freedom: Jesus Christ.
 
Happy Sabbath!
 
In His Service,    
Wesley Torres