Today marks the 38th anniversary of Roe v. Wade. Commenting on this, President Obama stated today his desire that “our daughters have the same rights, the same freedoms, and the same opportunities as our sons to fulfill their dreams.”

Freedom. That’s what 5,860 American soldiers have died to protect in Iraq and Afghanistan. Freedom means that we are not helpless pawns under the power of political, economic, military or religious tyrants. Freedom is well worth protecting.

But freedom itself is not something to be proud of. It only guards our potential. It’s what we do with freedom that counts. Freedom can be used to educate oneself or others, create honorable jobs, or raise money and conscience to help those in need. Freedom can be used to build families, pass on values and shape the character of the next generation. Freedom can be used to bless the other creatures of this planet and literally reach for the stars.

Or freedom can be used to methodically destroy 52 million helpless children since 1973 in one of the most profound tragedies in history.

In a fallen world, freedom is good because it allows Christ’s people to live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness as we pursue the salvation of people everywhere (1 Timothy 2:2). Freedom allows us to fulfill our ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind our own business and work hard to win the respect of others and not be dependent on anybody (1 Thessalonians 4:11-12). Freedom is something all Christians should protect.

But freedom is not something to be proud of. Freedom can be used to honor the will of God, and freedom can be used to desecrate the image of God. It’s what we do with our freedom that counts.