Dear Family of Mary!
January 25, 2016
Also today I am calling all of you to prayer.
You cannot live without prayer,
because prayer is a chain which brings you closer to God.
Therefore, little children,
in humility of heart
return to God
and to His commandments
so that with all of your heart you are able to say:
as it is in Heaven so may it be on earth.
You, little children, are free
to in freedom decide for God
or against Him.
See where Satan wants to pull you into sin and slavery.
Therefore, little children,
return to my heart
so that I can lead you to my Son Jesus
who is the Way, the Truth and the Life.
Thank you for having responded to my call.”
Our Lady speaks of freedom, because she understands that God has given each one of us freedom to choose. That power to choose, that freedom, is also our greatest danger. We can easily choose to walk away from God’s plan for our lives. (Remember Fr. Martin’s homily on trust!)
St. John Paul II wrote very clearly and powerfully about this gift of freedom. Here is an excerpt from Veritatis Splendor which captures so much about our freedom and its power for good or ill:
What is the ultimate source of the inner division of man? His history of sin begins when he no longer acknowledges the Lord as his Creator and himself wishes to be the one who determines, with complete independence, what is good and what is evil. You will be like God, knowing good and evil (Gen 3:5): this was the first temptation, and it is echoed in all the other temptations to which man is more easily inclined to yield as a result of the original fall.
But temptations can be overcome, sins can be avoided, because together with the commandments the Lord gives us the possibility of keeping them: His eyes are on those who fear him, and he knows every deed of man. He has not commanded any one to be ungodly, and he has not given any one permission to sin (Sir 15:19-20). Keeping God’s law in particular situations can be difficult, extremely difficult, but it is never impossible. This is the constant teaching of the Church’s tradition…. Man always has before him the spiritual horizon of hope, thanks to the help of divine grace…. It is in the saving cross of Jesus, in the gift of the Holy Spirit, in the sacraments which flow forth from the pierced side of the Redeemer, that believers find the grace and the strength always to keep God’s holy law, even amid the gravest of hardships. As Saint Andrew of Crete observes, the law itself “was enlivened by grace and made to serve it in a harmonious and fruitful combination. Each element preserved its characteristics without change or confusion. In a divine manner, he turned what could be burdensome and tyrannical into what is easy to bear and a source of freedom.”
Only in the mystery of Christ’s redemption do we discover the concrete possibilities of man. It would be a very serious error to conclude that the Church’s teaching is essentially only an “ideal” which must then be adapted. This is what is at stake: the reality of Christ’s redemption. Christ has redeemed us! This means that he has given us the possibility of realizing the entire truth of our being; he has set our freedom free from the domination of concupiscence.
St. John Paul II – From the encyclical Veritatis Splendor
The key to choosing God’s way over our own is TRUST. Remember that. Only God is trustworthy! Only He can lead us towards our true joy and eternal happiness!!
In Jesus, Mary and Joseph!
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