Wednesday, April 05, 2006

A Penitent Blogger on truly being "Free!"

Penitens, A Penitent Blogger reminds us here.
Today's Gospel (John 8:31-42) begins with these famous words:

If you remain in my word,
you will truly be my disciples,
and you will know the truth,
and the truth will set you free.

This freedom ultimately is freedom from sin, as our Lord says:

Everyone who commits sin is a slave of sin.
Many in our society downplay the concept of sin. Reasonable elites have pushed hard for everyone to cast aside such backward concepts. Sin is seen as hopelessly passe, mere moralizing based on outdated norms. Sophisticated people understand that We the People are the Lord, Our God. We will have no Gods before ourselves. Therefore, if we say it's good, it's good.

Thus, sin thrives. For sin is not pase. Sin is not mere moralizing.

Sin is cancer.

Sin is addiction to evil.

The early days of the recovery movements--AA, first and foremost among them--gave witness to the reality of sin and the need for Grace. Anyone that dismisses 12-Step recovery as simply self-help psychology hasn't paid attention to AA's history--or the men and women that lived it.

Addiction is the terrifying enslaver that threatens the very life and existance of the drunk. Nothing except surrender to the care of God--as the drunk understands God--overcomes this murderous tyrant.

Sound familiar?

We worship a God whom we've come to understand--through Faith--is Jesus Christ, the Son of the Living God. We believe that only through Christ's redemptive death and Ressurection do we over that murderous tyrant opposed to our everlasting life: sin.

We may believe we're acting free when we sin. We're only fooling ourselves. We're slaves to the disproportionate reactions and disordered desires that sin propogates in our hearts and minds like dandelions on a spring field. We do the evil we don't want to do, as St. Paul says. We become trapped in self-destructive cycles of behavior, which cost us everything we hold dear.

Christ frees us from this captivity. Alive in him, we enjoy the freedom to become who we truly are: his brothers and sisters! We're free to live in him, to enjoy communion with our Father in Heaven "through him, with him and in him."

When we hold fast to his word, we remain free. This is the Good News! Let us rejoice in the gift of freedom our God has given us! Let us share that with an enshadowed society enslaved to sin! They await the gift our Father has given to us all.