Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Where Living for God Will Lead You

The linked column shows something of the proper response to people who cluck their tongues about things like the "Dark Ages" or the "repressive nature of religion."

There is a quote I have read somewhere from Michaelangelo. It goes (pardon inexactitude) "The greatest danger in life is not setting your goals too high and not achieving them. It is setting your goals too low and achieving them." The spiritual life has something of this in it. When we reflect that a participation in grace is a participation in divinity, why do we think there is anything that God cannot do with and for us? Granted, changing takes time, it requires moving in new directions, changing habits etc. But after we accept that, why grow tired? Why stop? I would suspect that we stop and slow because we try to do it without Grace. We begin to slack in prayer, slack at Mass, carefully examining our motives and means. In short we convince ourselves it is all about us.

So here's the paradox. Insofar as we say "yes" to the Lord and his providence, it gets done by His grace. Insofar as we say "no" the Lord is not free to act through us but must find other ways. This is the mystery of free will.

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