Once there was a Sea Bass named Fin. He lived off the coast of Lewes, Delaware. Fin went to school with all the other fish, loved swimming in the water, and playing water tag. Fin was just a normal fish. However, Fin had one desire, a desire for freedom. Fin would lie awake at night thinking what it would be like to be free from the cold, wet water. He would imagine the pleasure of having sand under his fins, the warm sun on his back, and experiencing the cool ocean sea breezes. “Yes,” he reasoned, “That is true freedom.”

Fin often talked about his desire for freedom with his parents. “Dad, have you ever been out of this annoying water?” “No, God made me a fish, and God made you a fish. God designed you to swim in the water. God’s design always works. So stay in the water, son.” Fin didn’t want to believe his father. “I don’t care what Dad says, I want to be free!” thought Fin.

Eventually, Fin had his chance. He slipped out of his school, and swam relentlessly toward the glistening beach. Each moment his excitement heightened. “I just need to get out of this cold, wet water. This water is bondage. Freedom is being able to do what I want.” Suddenly, Fin was only one wave away; he paused for a moment, and then he rode the wave and shot out onto the beach.

“Yes! Freedom!” He felt unspeakable pleasure as he sensed the sand under his fins, the warm sun on his back, and the cool ocean breezes. “See,” he considered, “Dad was wrong. God was wrong. This is true freedom.” With that, he basked in the searing pleasure of the moment.

But, all was not well. Unexpectedly, Fin felt it getting hard to breathe. The sand that once was so pleasant started to cause a great irritation. Beating down on him was the sun, which he thought would be delightful, but was now making him miserable. The nasty ocean breezes were drying his scales. He tried to swim, but found he couldn’t. All he could do was flop around on the dry, irritating sand. “This is not freedom, this is bondage!” Fin realized.

Longingly, he gazed at the water, “If only I could get back in and experience the energizing, refreshing ocean. He tried and tried, but all his flopping was of no use. He could not return to the water by himself; he needed help. Then, almost instantaneously, he felt the smooth, tender hands of a child lifting him up, and pitching him into the ocean. Finally, Fin realized that true freedom is not freedom to do whatever he wanted, but true freedom is freedom to do what he should do.

So many people, like Fin the Sea Bass, are longing for freedom. They believe that God’s design is somehow keeping them from some great pleasure. From the very beginning, when Satan deceived Eve by saying, “God is not letting you have everything. Look at the fruit; God’s design is restricting your pleasure and freedom.” The problem is that sin’s pleasure is only for a season; it doesn’t last. God’s design does last. Following God’s design is true freedom. So when Satan suggests that the pleasure of lust is freedom, that pride will grant fulfillment, or that bitterness is a right you have, remember the story of Fin the sea bass. Realize that the wages of sin is death, but God is waiting with open hands to throw you back into the vast ocean of True Freedom.

“If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.” ~ John 8:36