Beautiful rowdy prisoners, all of us.
We push our boney hand out through the cold bars of our cages, hoping for something to release us from the captivity—anything. Some of us fight against the sturdy metal, hoping to weaken it; others of us sit in the corner, having given up, accepting the reality of captivity.
And then the keys drop. It’s the greatest feeling on earth to hold that precious key in your hand. It’s the greatest sound on earth, the clamor of cages being opened and the weeping of the freed prisoners.
Beautiful rowdy prisoners, all of us.
In Psalm 107, the Psalmist writes,
“Some sat in darkness and in the shadow of death, prisoners in affliction and in irons, for they had rebelled against the words of God, and spurned the counsel of the Most High. So he bowed their hearts down with hard labor; they fell down, with none to help. Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble, and he delivered them from their distress. He brought them out of darkness and the shadow of death, and burst their bonds apart. Let them thank the Lord for his steadfast love, for his wondrous works to the children of man! For he shatters the doors of bronze and cuts in two the bars of iron” (Ps 107:10-16).
We are all prisoners, incapable to free ourselves from the bondage of our failures, defeats, our shame, and guilt. We are beaten down by the “try-harder,” “do-better” law that often meets us when we seek encouragement.
Everywhere we turn, more lists, more to-dos, more law. Dropping Keys seeks to be a place of proclamation that the “doors of bronze are shattered, and the bars of iron are cut in two!” The Keys have been dropped! The very promise of freedom spoken of in Psalm 107, the freedom brought by God Himself, is made actual in the life, death, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus Christ! The key is Christ and He came to set the captives (us!) free. As Jesus says of Himself quoting from the scroll of Isaiah in the gospel of Luke, “‘The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor’” (4:17-19). And in the gospel of John, “So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed” (8:38). Jesus Christ is the only one who can set us free and actually does set us free. By faith in Him, we are no longer bound and locked in cages, but free…really, truly free.
Whether you have wondered why the Bible speaks of freedom, yet have felt nothing but chains your entire Christian life, or you have said to yourself, “If Christ has come to set the captives free he must have forgotten me or didn’t love me enough to include me in that jail break,” you need to know you are not alone—we’ve wondered and questioned just as you.
Each of us contributing to this blog has tangibly felt the freedom of the gospel proclaimed to us. The gospel message, in short, is this: “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners” (1 Tim 1:15), and this “It will be counted to us who believe in him who raised from the dead Jesus our Lord, who was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification.” (Rom 4:24-25) It is only hearing this message about what Christ has done, and having faith in Him, that can free us. Thus, It is our desire to be key droppers, to be proclaimers of the sweet message of the gospel. We are eager to bring to you the scandalous gospel; the gospel that presents grace with no ands, ifs, or buts; the gospel that frees the rowdy prisoners.
As a group of women and men who know what it is to live under the crushing burden of the law with no grace in sight, we want to make this a safe place. A safe place for the broken, weary, and heavy laden to come, rest, and soak in the love of Christ for you (yes, you!). A safe place to come and learn things you may have never heard before or thought were too deep to understand. There will be no bricks added to your backpack; there will be no exhortations to try harder or do better; and there will be no new lists. There will only be the unadulterated, pure, gospel message that brings freedom, and the camaraderie in knowing that we are just like you: desperate people in much need of a huge serving of grace. You can come messy; we’re messy too!
We pray that what we proclaim to you will be as sweet as the sound of a key turning in the lock to your prison door. And if you don’t hear that sweet sound the first time you visit, come back; we’ll be proclaiming the gospel as long as we have breath in our lungs.
The keys have been dropped, my friend. Freedom is here!