Grace to you!
All around us, we make choices, don’t we? We get to choose our home, our car, our food, and the movies we see. Not all these choices turn out as expected, yet we chose them anyway.
For instance, one may not understand the importance of choosing a comfortable shoe until one wears some shoes that really hurt. The shoes may look fancy and beautiful, but they are heavy and improperly aligned. Because of the look, some may prefer them to a more comfortable, though less lavish shoe. The choice for the fancy over the comfortable has consequences.
In nature, every choice we make has implications—good, bad and ugly. It’s how God has made nature. God desires us to choose from the plenitude of his blessings in the world.
Scripture emphasizes this truth: “If you will, you can keep the commandments, and to act faithfully is a matter of your own choice. He has placed before you fire and water: stretch out your hand for whichever you wish. Before a man are life and death, and whichever he chooses will be given to him” (Sirach 15:15-17).
Some may say, why would there be many choices for us? Why would God allow evil amidst the good, making the choice more difficult?
My response, permit me, is in the form of a question: Why freedom, why the right to choose if there is only one thing from which one can choose? In fact, the concept of choice would be ridiculous if there were no alternatives from which one could choose.
Moreover, the beauty of being human is that we can choose, just like the beauty of going to the movies is that we can anticipate, select and choose what movie to see.
In nature, God has inscribed the laws, and through Divine Revelation; he has shown us the good to choose and the evil to avoid. Not only did God do it on the tablet of stone in the Old Testament, Jesus Christ came in person to reveal what true life in God is and what it entails.
God didn’t leave it out there for us to second guess and be confused as to what He wants. God equally put in our souls the seed of his awareness, the voice of God and of morality, conscience, so we can choose what is good and avoid what is evil.
The same spirit of the Law inscribed in Letters is the spirit of the Law inscribed in our hearts, enabling us to desire what the spirit of the Law Giver is, both within and outside of us. God has inscribed in creation the laws and their concomitant reward. We receive what we choose.
When God created us, he looked at all He made and it was very good. Meaning, the best possible world ever to be made has been made by God. Creation and the complexity of the moral law follow the laws set by the Creator.
The spiritual law is such that when the law in our hearts responds positively to the law of God outside of us, in the end a holy marriage is made. There is joy and true, transforming freedom. However, when there is disconnect between the law within and the law outside of us, spiritual conflicts arise. Those conflicts reverberate in eternity when we pass.
Heaven is where the law within and the law outside finally become one, as designed from the beginning. Hell is where the separation reaches untold, unbearable proportion of conflict and pain.
May God give us the grace to choose wisely, all the time. Amen.
God love you. God bless you.
Fr. Maurice Emelu
Fr. Maurice Emelu
Father Maurice provides a daily blog of reflections based on the bible readings of the day from the Catholic liturgical calendar. You will find these reflections helpful for your spiritual growth, inspiration and developing your own thoughts. It may also be helpful for ministers in preparing their sermons for liturgical celebrations.