Freedom From...or Freedom For?

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Many years ago I heard a priest give a talk about becoming free from our personal bondage or sin.  He stressed the point that while we can work very hard on our freedom and accept God’s grace, we have to be freed for something.

I was thinking about this as I realized that in the last few years I’ve been freed from some negative patterns of behavior and took some steps to not get into situations where I could easily fall back into the negative patterns.

However, life sometimes has a way of trying to suck you back into past behaviors.  I know how not to react, but I’m not sure how to react.  And of course, these issues do not crop up on their own, it’s within interactions with others. While I know how I would like to handle the situation, sometimes the other person refuses to engage.

So what do you do?  Do you go back to bad habits that are harmful?  I have not done that but I find myself in this place of frustration.  What have I been freed for?  In the situations I am thinking about, I think I have been freed to do nothing!  Big shock for me: my go-to mode is take care of it. 

Sometimes God really expects us to let things play out without our intervention; we are being called to trust in his way.  I am being reminded that I am not the Messiah and that God is in control.

Is there a bit of suffering going on for me?  Yes but I will get through it by relying on God and not myself.  I have been freed to do nothing.  This may not be the answer next time, but it is this time and so I pray and trust.

What has God freed you from and for in your life?

Copyright  2014, Deanna Bartalini

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About Author

Deanna Bartalini is a Catholic wife, mom, writer and educator. Deanna has been married for over 30 years and raised two wonderful adults. She is the Director of Faith Formation at St. Edward Catholic Church in Palm Beach, FL. She writes at DeannaBartalini.com, she serves as the editor of the NewEvangelizers.com blog and is a contributor there as well as at AmazingCatechists.com and contributed to our latest Catholic Mom title, A Catholic Mom's Prayer Companion. Deanna is available to lead retreats and speak at catechist and ministry events.

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