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 G. Bartalini, is a Catholic writer, speaker, and educator. She and her husband Deacon John have two married children and a grandson. Deanna loves teaching about Catholicism and how it fits into our daily lives. She writes at DeannaBartalini.com, serves as the editor of the NewEvangelizers.com blog, and is a contributor there as well as at AmazingCatechists.com. Deanna contributed to A Catholic Mom's Prayer Companion published by Ave Maris Press. She has written “Invite the Holy Spirit into Your Life: Growing in Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness and Self-Control” one book in the series of the Stay Connected Journals for Catholic Women published by Gracewatch Media. Deanna is available to lead retreats and speak at catechist and ministry events.

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