Free Will

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Free will is a concept that has caused me much frustration in my life so far. What I want to want to do never seems to line up with what I think I want to do. I love God. As a child of God, I want to follow Him. I dearly wish it was a one time black or white decision. If only I could say yes to Him and shut off my free will. I wish I could be a good little Jesus robot, never sinning again, always doing things for the greater Glory of His name.
That isn’t what he wants though. He doesn’t want drones, he wants us. Just as He made us. As frustrating as it is, he wants the imperfect beauty of a broken heart saying yes a thousand times. He cherishes our struggles because He gets how hard it is to say yes to Him. He understands temptation. Temptation comes in many forms, and he experienced that when He became man. He was tempted.
The devil offered Him food when He was hungry, tested His pride, offered Him all the earthly pleasures. God understands temptation maybe better than we do. He was able to say no. Through the grace of God the Father, Jesus was able to stand up in the face of temptation.
God loves His child who having fallen, having given in to temptation a hundred times, gets up that 101st time and says “No. I choose God.” Satan and our own human nature make it feel impossible to say yes to God sometimes. That’s the beauty of free will though.
We get to choose. Sometimes choosing God will be the hardest thing you do all day. I’ve been failing a lot lately, and it always seems like the more I fall down, the easier it is to fall down the next time. The reverse also seems true though. When I do good, when I follow God’s law, it becomes easier to say yes to Him. Temptation will always be there, but it seems to get easier to stand up to, or run away from, as necessary, as you go along.
God respects our free will, but He delights in us making the right choices. Satan can tempt us, but he can never force us to leave God’s side. This is something that can only happen should we freely choose it. Sin is only mortal if it meets three conditions, grave matter, full knowledge, and full consent. Without free will, we cannot give full consent. This is why in the case of addictions the sin isn’t always mortal.
Cultivating discipline can help you make better use of your free will. Practicing doing good in the small moments can help you achieve greatness when the time comes.
Until next time brothers and sisters, I encourage you to exercise your free will for the greater glory of God.
Take care, and God bless you.

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