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Spiritual Liberty in the Night

In order to secure our true liberty, even while we were enslaved to sin, Christ suffered the night of death and John of the Cross zburban Imprisonment for post on spiritual libertyransomed us by His blood. This is why the Lord respects human freedom, even when it is the source of great sorrow. Aware of our frailty, God does not overpower our freedom but delights to work through it in a very gentle and beautiful way. As a result, it is easy to frustrate His work in us.  At the same time, we can also order our lives to allow Him greater freedom to accomplish His purpose in us – and when we do this, nothing can separate us from the love of God.  To this end, St. John of the Cross counsels souls to use their liberty to imitate the Lord. He proposes that this imitation, if made with loving devotion, prepares the soul to welcome the wondrous freedom that our Savior established in His sacred humanity and that He is working to establish in ours: the freedom to be filled with God.

Because it is so mysterious, hidden and secret, the Carmelite mystic describes Christ's work of spiritual freedom in us as  “night.”  Tenderly working with great power within our freedom, the Word of the Father envelopes the soul in the liberty of love even as the soul remains completely unaware of what He is doing or how He is doing it.  It seems that only in the darkness of this spiritual night is the Light Himself able to lead us out of the prisons we make of our own egos.  

Divine freedom is hidden in difficult events.  St. John of the Cross suffered captivity, not allowed to see the light of day for months, in the effort not to betray those souls whom he had helped come to taste the liberty of prayer.  It was a battle of wills between himself and his tormentors. They wanted him to renounce the spiritual freedom he was promoting and in exchange they offered him a very comfortable life of solitude, study, and prayer.  He was not impressed.  So they starved and beat him, trying to break his obstinacy.  

How did he survive?  In the darkness of his cell in Toledo, a deep faith allowed him to drink from the mysterious river of Divine Love that freely ran through that brutal experience in ways that could not be seen.  It was in the physical darkness of night that he made his daring escape even while his captors slept. 

Night, as a spiritual reality, humbly reminds us how little we ever understand of the ways of the Lord.  One of my students was an old Hillbilly who had served our country in Vietnam. He suffered many difficult kinds of captivity in his life – substance abuse being one of them. Although he was discerning the permanent diaconate, he was not able to complete his formation, and never was ordained.  But he had a servant's heart and loved generously and above all wanted to serve the Lord. There was a strong, suffering devotion in him for God, his family, and the Church, even while he felt rejected and out of place.  The fight for true liberty was in him even though he was tormented by all kinds of disappointments and personal failures.  He died a couple years ago in a boating accident leaving behind his wife and adult children.  

One of the last times I saw him, we talked about his military service and the long-term effects of war on a man. We talked about social and political freedom, and elements in our culture that worked against the truth that authentic liberty needs.  We also talked about spiritual freedom as the liberty by which the truth of every other freedom was safeguarded.  He later gave a hunting knife to my son with these words etched onto the blade “Freedom is not free but bought at great cost, the cost of blood.”

For my friend, this was not merely a political reality that he fought for, but a spiritual one by which he strove to live. To purchase our freedom, Christ died for us. It is in this freedom alone, the freedom by which He laid down his life for us and by which we lay down our lives for one another, that He can freely enter into our lives. Our faith does not exempt us from fighting for this freedom.  It enables us to.  Sometimes this fight needs to be social and political.  Always this battle is personal and spiritual.

To enter the night of spiritual liberty, Saint John of the Cross counsels imitation of the Lord's own freedom. We gain insight into this freedom and how it applies to us through a prayerful study of the Lord's life.  If we study the life of Christ on our knees and ready to be pierced to the heart, the divine splendor of the Redeemer's human liberty continually overwhelms us with wonder. In Him, God's freedom and man's freedom mysteriously coincide.  In his humanity, the Son of God was totally sovereign to live every moment for the honor and glory of the Father no matter His poverty or perilous circumstance, no matter the political or cultural forces of His day, no matter the corruption or injustice He confronted. The visible image of the Invisible God, He wanted to manifest the mysterious love of the Father with every heartbeat love allowed and the Word of the Father knew the freedom never to do anything other than follow this noble passion wherever it led.

To imitate the Suffering Servant, we must fight for this same freedom by renouncing everything in our lives that is not for the love of God. We cannot accomplish God's will by our own unaided efforts, but we can make space for God's freedom in our freedom by renouncing ourselves, picking up our cross and following our crucified Master.  Striving to live with the same liberty by which the Risen Lord lives opens us, avails us, to a mysterious darkness which the world does not understand, a beautiful night in which all that is good, holy and true about our humanity breaks out of its captivity and even in the face of death comes into the fullness of life.

Note from Dan: Anthony's fantastic book on prayer, Hidden Mountain Secret Garden, can be found HERE in print, and HERE in Kindle format.

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Art for this post on Spiritual Liberty in the Night: Saint Serapius, Francisco de Zurbarán, 1628, PD-US author's life plus 100 years or less, PD-Worldwide, Wikimedia Commons.

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About Anthony Lilles

Anthony Lilles, a graduate of Franciscan University of Steubenville, completed his graduate and post-graduate studies in Rome at the Pontifical University of St. Thomas. He and his lovely wife, Agnes, are blessed with three children and live in California, where he is the Academic Dean, and Associate Professor of Theology, St. John's Seminary, Archdiocese of Los Angeles, and Academic Advisor at Juan Diego House, House of Formation for Seminarians. For over twenty years, Dr. Lilles worked for the Denver Archdiocese directing parish religious education, R.C.I.A. and youth ministry, as well as serving as Director of the Office of Liturgy for the Archdiocese and as Coordinator of Spiritual Formation for the permanent diaconate. In 1999, he became a founding faculty member of St. John Vianney Theological Seminary where he was Academic Dean for nine years and Associate Professor of Theology. He is a Board Member for the Society of Catholic Liturgy. Dr. Lilles has provided graduate level courses on a variety of topics including the Eucharist, the Sacraments of Healing, Church History, Spiritual Theology, Spiritual Direction and on various classics of Catholic Spirituality. His expertise is in the spiritual doctrine of Blessed Elisabeth of the Trinity and the Carmelite Doctors of the Church: St. Teresa of Avila, St. John of the Cross and St. Thérèse of Lisieux. In 2012, Discerning Hearts published his book "Hidden Mountain, Secret Garden: A Theological Contemplation on Prayer," a compilation of discussions with seminarians, students, and contemplatives about the spiritual life. He collaborated with Dan Burke on the books "30 Days with Teresa of Avila" and "Living the Mystery of Merciful Love: 30 Days with Thérèse of Lisieux". And, his book "Fire from Above" was published in 2016. Among his many accomplishments and responsibilities, Dr. Lilles now teaches theology for the Avila Institute. He blogs at BeginningtoPray.blogspot.com

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  • Theresa George

    Do you know the source of the picture? I came across it last week and was intrigued since I have never seen it before.

    It never ceases to leave me in awe when I reflect that John of the Cross composed the most heart wrenching poetry and writings while imprisoned.  He truly did experience that liberty of spirit.

    A question that comes to mind often when I read reflections similar to these is…how do you know *what* to renounce?  How do you know if something is keeping your from God…an obstacle to growing in the spiritual life?

    • Hello, Theresa. You pose two very good questions: what to renounce and what is an obstacle in growing in the spiritual life. 

      In a nutshell, we need to work first on those sins that we commit the most. This can be a long, difficult process but well worth it. Certainly we need to work on the “big things” first. For example, if I’m leading a life of mortal sin, I need to work on that first and then, say, on my potty mouth. Frequently receiving the sacraments and daily personal prayer are of great importance. Once we leave behind those major sins, we work on our habitual sins, little by little, with God’s grace: the petty lies, the temper tantrums, envies, jealousies, etc. One should resist the urge to try and work on all sins and faults at once. Many spiritual directors identify one thing to work on, one virtue to practice, rather than set ourselves out to frustration for our inability to root out sin. We must remember, we don’t make ourselves saints. God’s the one to do that with our cooperation. 

      One we’re on a path of prayer, the sacraments and avoidance of major sins, as well as habitual sins according to our inclinations, we can work on faults. For example, am I spending an inordinate amount of time on Facebook when I could offer a Rosary for the souls in purgatory? Am I spending several hours a day on television shows that show scenes that are morally questionable when I could be spending some quality time with my spouse? Does the company I keep behave and speak in ways that I would be ashamed if Christ were to materialize in their midst? Is there something that, though not intrinsically bad, makes me, because of my nature,  have thoughts or perform actions that, if I’m not careful, would lead me to fall? For example, that soap opera I really enjoy keeps getting more and more sexual, exciting my imagination. I would be better off renouncing that soap and instead do something more profitable. The purpose of denying myself something is to allow God the Father to give me something even better. If my heart is cluttered by sin and inordinate desires, I’m not allowing God “space” to enter my heart and shower me with His graces and blessings. It is an emptying that I may be filled with better things, according to His will.

      I highly recommend you read St John of the Cross’ Ascent of Mount Carmel. It is an excellent treatise on how to precisely start that walk to renouncing sin and set ourselves in a life of prayer and purification (which is the subject of Dark Night of the Soul).

      Hope this helps.

      • Theresa George

        Thank you Monica for your time!

        I am a Secular Carmelite and have read the *Ascent* numerous times.  But sometimes, practically applying what is learned there to those living in this modern age in the world can be hard to discern.  It’s always good to have examples and you gave excellent ones.  I find I constantly need to balance my time on the computer with my other duties.  I may be visiting good spiritual sites or blogging but if it is an obstacle to my prayer life, then I need to approach my time on the computer more thoughtfully. I still find it hard to discern but I am a work in progress : )

        Bless you~

        • Excellent point, Dan! At the beginning we may be able to “walk by ourselves”, but as God starts to mold us more into His own image, purifying our souls, it can be tricky. A good spiritual director, for example, can discern between a purification and depression. We’re all works in progress, but that’s part of the beauty of life, to be transformed if we allow ourselves and cooperate with God’s grace.

          I shall pray for you, that you receive the guidance you need and the grace of a good spiritual director. 

          • LizEst

            I think he has one Monica. ; )

          • I meant Theresa! 🙂 Gotta love undefined antecedents.

          • Hey, LizEst!!!!! A miracle or what????? you have the countenance of this old gal now….I know not how she came into view

          • Theresa George

            : )  I do have a spiritual mentor…thanks be to God.  I am always open to learning more though through those living the Faith courageously in this world. Thanks Monica!

        • Anthony_Lilles

          I commend you for reading the Ascent of Mount Carmel – it is a tough work and I had to re-read it many times before the beauty of what St. John of the Cross teaches there began to disclose itself to me. A very helpful book that I recommend to my students who struggle with this particular text is Father Iain Matthew’s The Impact of God: Soundings from St. John of the Cross. I never met Father Matthew but his observations are accessible and beautiful. Also, Father Dubay’s Fire Within unlocks something of this same doctrine as does also Ralph Martin’s Fulfillment of All Desire. I love your thoughtful appropriation of this teaching in real life.

          • Theresa George

            Yes, Fr. Matthew’s book is excellent and one that I haven’t picked up in a while.  I also have Dubay’s book.  I have found Barbara Dent’s writings helpful as well: *My Only Friend is Darkness* and *The Marriage of All and Nothing*.

            I like the challenge of applying JoC’s teachings to the daily life of those living in the world.  I am always looking for good resources, for when I instruct a formation class, I can give concrete examples to help them grasp his teachings a bit better.

          • I loved Fire Within!

      • Well said Monica. The challenge can often be that we are not the best judge of what we need to renounce. Our predominant fault or root sin can always provide some insight or direction. As well, our daily examination of conscience. But, once we get past habitual mortal and venial sins, it becomes more difficult to discern. This is a point where a spiritual director becomes invaluable.

      • Anthony_Lilles

        Thank you for this reflection Monica – there is so much good wisdom in it. Yes, this particular reflection on spiritual liberty was inspired by Ascent to Mount Carmel, Book 1, Chapter 13, paragraphs 3-4. The remaining paragraphs in that chapter talk about all kinds of renunciations we might also make – like renouncing our attachment to being thought well of by others. The Doctor of the Church even has a drawing after which this particular commentary is named: The Ascent to Mount Carmel. I love to study this drawing and think about what it means for my day to day, moment by moment decisions. In a future post, I want to write about Ascent to Mount Carmel, Book 2, paragraphs 8-11 where the Carmelite Master proposes Christ crucified as the model for those the Lord invites into a special communion of love in this life. I think there is something in his application that is good for all of us no matter where we are on the journey.

        • Theresa George

          I, too, have his drawing printed out to reflect on.  I have yet to hang it somewhere in the house but it’s nice to have it on hand during prayer. I look forward to your writings on the Ascent.

        • LizEst

          “Renouncing our attachment to being thought well of by others” is tricky because we can go too far the other way and tell ourselves who cares what they think, we have no need of them anyway! This is called Black Pride, wherein one becomes so self-sufficient that one rejects the help of anyone else in any form. This hinders spiritual growth and the spiritual direction process. An enlightening moment when the light come on about that one! Indeed, as you wrote, Dr. Lilles, it is so true that “We cannot accomplish God’s will by our own unaided efforts…” We must humbly accept the helps he provides…including that help that is the dark night of the soul.

          God bless you, Dr. Lilles. Excellent post! Thank you.

    • rjk123

      Yesterday’s CSD Book Club Week 9 reflection had lots of good suggestions for identifying those things that separate us from God’s love. Rachel

      • Theresa George

        Thanks! I will go check it out Rachel.

      • Theresa George

        That was an excellent reflection from Week 9. I already printed out the list to keep handy for I see myself in so many. Thanks for recommending it.

        The beautiful painting is called: Saint Serapion or The Martyrdom of Saint Serapion by the Spanish artist Francisco Zurbarán (1598—1664).

      • Anthony_Lilles

        Thanks for this Rachel – great resource.

    • Anthony_Lilles

      Thank you for your observation about St. John of the Cross’s liberty of spirit. I love this picture too – and have never seen it before. I also like the responses by Monica and Rachel to your questions. There is much more to say concerning the renunciation of even very good things out of love for Christ – and it is a sign of spiritual health when questions like those you are asking pierce our hearts.

  • rjk123

    Anthony, your book Hidden Mountain, Secret Garden is giving me new insights into the spirituality of St. Therese–as well as many other insights. When we suffer–darkness, anxiety, fear, depression, etc.–and yet believe, are we suffering the pain nonbelievers suffer–as Therese did? And do we offer this to Jesus as a share in His suffering and to complete His suffering? Also, Therese wanted Jesus to give her all the Love and mercy He intended for others, but that they rejected. Is this a prayer I can emulate? I confess, I feel guilty asking for what Jesus intends for others. Although, I understand from Comforting the Heart of Jesus, that this is a comfort to Him. What do you think?

    • Dear Rachel,You have some beautiful observations and questions.  Should you emulate the prayer of St. Therese?  I think when we allow ourselves to behold the wonder of Christ’s love for us and for those He entrusts to us, it is so beautiful and deep, our hearts are overcome, silenced, bowed in adoration. At the same time, we are fascinated, captivated, drawn out of ourselves and into vast horizons of divine mercy, immeasurable horizons that even after 2000 years of saints the Church has only just begun to explore.

      God wants us to thrive, to live life to the full, to discover in the limitlessness of His mercy the limits of our misery.  What you want to emulate points to this fullness. This is what moved Therese to beg for the graces others rejected. That absolute preciousness of what Christ pours out should move us too with the same passion. We too should yearn that it never be wasted- for every moment of grace is unique and irreplaceable, every new presnece of Christ irrepeatable, each gift obtained at unimaginable price.  

      To live treasuring each moment of this life as a new opportunity to welcome the gift of God, this means never losing hope in God, even in the midst of difficult trials. Together with this it means never abandonning His commandment that we should love one another – no matter the cost. And when we find in our poverty of heart that we cannot love, it means crying out to God for mercy and renouncing anything opposed to love.

      Whenever we suffer physically, psychologically or spiritually – our tradition suggests we can always offer this as spiritual worship to God, even when these situations push us to the edge, far beyond our comfort zone, when everything seems to be falling part around us.  Yes we should prudently seek the help we need and avoid situations in which we know we will sin – God wants us to be reasonable as were the saints in this regard.  But sometimes, after we have done all we can to address our health, or a painful situation, or a spiritual affliction – all we have left is to throw ourselves on the mercy of God. There is a great suffering – the mystics even speak of a kind of annihilation. Here in this severe darkness of our brokenness is where the greatness of our humanity is revealed — because it is where the humility of the Lord is made known.  

      Those who allow the Lord to lead them into this place of extreme poverty and vulnerability are blest to become living springs of grace for others – for they are in a place where God can show His power in their weakness.  For St. Therese, this meant relying more radically on the Lord in every circumstance even as she felt utterly abandoned, and it also meant for her realizing that any patience she might have in the midst of her physical sickness and spiritual trial was not her own, but the patience that came from the Lord.  It was all Him – all His love that was revealed through her and this delighted her even as she suffered the feelings of despair and hatred for religion that those who do not know God are trapped in.  This sacred solidarity with those who suffer without God is a beautiful thing to aspire to.  It is mercy – for mercy is love that suffers the evil of a neighbor to affirm the neighbor’s dignity, and this so that our neighber does not suffer alone. 

      This is the merciful love that lives in the heart of Jesus. It is the love of the Father whom He yearns for us to know. It is the love that drove Him to the Cross.  And He longs to share this with us so that we will be equipt to enter into the hearts of others, so that they do not have to suffer alone, so that even in the alienating anguish of despair and unbelief, there might be love.  

      This is what we share in when we partake of the Eucharist or surrender ourselves in Adoration.  Sr. Faustina implies this participation of our hearts in His Heart throughout her Diary. This same passion drove Mother Theresa of Calcutta to the poorest of the poor.  This is the same passion that the grace of the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick can provide to those who are approaching their supreme moment of life.  
      Anthony

      • rjk123

        Thank you. You have given me a lot to munch on and ponder. Just like your book does. I hope I am right in taking from your response that there is so much more than we can ever imagine in the power of the Love and Mercy of God that flows through the Mystical Body to all–even unbelievers; in other words, sinners in and out of the Mystical Body. Your say frequently in our book that when we are faithful, we give God space–“the space in our hearts for God’s power to be unleashed in the world . . . the freedom to move in us and act in us with His saving love.” Our part is to trust and obey in humility and thankfulness. How He does it and what exactly He does is His business.   In pondering St. Therese’s spirituality, I have been praying that Jesus will show men just how He wants me to participate in His life, what insight He wants to give me about my role at this stage in my life and in my spiritual growth. It really isn’t any of my business, but I will look for what He wants to show me. Therese was quiet and hidden. Mother Teresa was active and visible. What am I? What does He want to do with my faithfulness and my prayer and my participation in His life? That’s up to the Lord. I just pray for humility and obedience and thankfulness. The Lord has told me that Patience is what He will be teaching me this year. He told me to be “content, thankful, patient and joyful.” Content to be who I am. I can stop looking for the core thing that makes me wrong and bad and worse than all other human beings because there is no such thing. With that insight, He healed me from the core suffering of a lifetime!  I am His daughter, created by Him, to be who I am. And He loves me right where I am. And He is growing and changing me according to His purposes to remove all obstacles to His love from my life. And to use my life in Him for the benefit of others as He sees fit.  Trust and obey. Be content. Your deep insights and new ways of seeing things are beautifully contributing to the Lord’s work in my life. Thank you. Rachel

        • Anthony_Lilles

          Thank you for this feedback Rachel – it sounds like the Lord is doing something very profound in your life. Something of your words reminds me of that part of the Story of a Soul where Therese ponders why the Lord put all these desires on her heart that as a contemplative religious she could not fulfill — and here the Lord was able to reveal to her the vocation to be love in the heart of the Church. Somehow, I think it brings great joy to the heart of God when we express to Him the generous desires that live in the depths of our hearts but seem impossible.  He loves to show us how everything is possible in Him. You have a beautiful faith!

          • “It brings great joy to the heart of God when we express to Him the generous desires that live in the depths of our heart but seem impossible. He loves to show everything is possible in Him.” 
            Thank you for this beautiful message! How wonderful and comforting! Many times the desires in my heart given my current vocation seem very impossible. One moment I want to be like St Therese and St Faustina and help Him saves souls, the next like Mother Teresa and serve the poor… How can I do both?
            As a law student discerning a religious or consecrated vocation,  I’m certain He wants me to finish law school though… I can’t do either now, or not as much as I dream of doing… Someday He will fulfill it! I just need to trust and be patient… 

          • Anthony_Lilles

            As a law student, it seems God is blessing you with many ways of serving Him.  Thank the Lord for generous souls like you who are eager to respond to His call!

          • rjk123

            Thank you. God Bless you! Rachel

      • rjk123

        “This sacred solidarity with those who suffer without God is a beautiful thing to aspire to. It is mercy – for mercy is love that suffers the evil of a neighbor to affirm the neighbor’s dignity, and this is so that our neighbor does not suffer alone. . . And He longs to share this (merciful love, the Love of the Father, the love that drove Jesus to the cross) so that we will be equipt to enter into the hearts of others, so that they do not have to suffer alone.” “St. Faustina implies this partcipation of our hearts in His Heart throughout her diary.” Thank you for this insight. Rachel

      • rjk123

        Wow! Thank you. Yes, yes, yes! Did you just add a lot of thoughts or do I just not remember them? You don’t have to answer that question. It’s all fresh and so beautiful!  Yes, His love and mercy is so overwhelmingly wonderful. I love all your descriptions and my heart sings in response. Thank you! Please do keep writing and sharing. I love your book, and I go back to it also, to reread parts over and over, to go deeper.  God is so good. Just think: we will be able to love Him for all eternity!!!  And I must stop or I will write another book here myself! Rachel

        • Anthony_Lilles

          Thank you for your kinds words – and for your faith.  I love your thought that we will be able to love Him without end – because His goodness is limitless. 

      • $1650412

        Prof Lilles, this response above should be a post all its own on this blog. Perhaps you could title it from Terese’s prayer, and give more of that by way of introduction. I think alot of people who would love this, will miss it buried here if they are not following the discussion personally or are not following some of the commenters on Disqus etc.

    • Do you recall St. Therese’s Act of Oblation to be a Victim of Love? I believe it is written out in The Story of a Soul. Someone gave me a little booklet of it years ago. What you are describing is absolutely what she said – she wanted to have a “little army” of souls willing to be victims of love for God! We are all invited, and the Lord has especially perhaps invited you!

  • $30899374

    You captured the essence of the “Dark Knight of the Soul” so beautifully.

  • Woops!!! this one is over my simple, uncomplicated mind.  The Theology is too deep for me to understand.  God show me the way You want me to travel.  Let me see Your Footsteps, my Jesus, and give me the Grace to follow You.

    • LizEst

      Mary, how wonderful to see your face! God bless you. Thank you so much. What joy!

    • I have no clue how the countenance decided to oblige you!!!!!!!!

      • LizEst

        It’s wonderful to see you! You indicated earlier that Becky Ward had your picture. Perhaps she was able to set it up for you, thanks be to God.

        ps. Your outfit reminds me of a Catholic school uniform…that of a young girl, not an old gal! God bless you, Mary.

        • Oh, thanks LizEst.  Yes, I guess Becky helped us on this.  Though it started appearing on the Responses we are making in our explosive Electronic Media in this highly charged period as we head for the next Monday’s 4th March General Elections. 

          Oh, my outfit???? I have failed completely to shake off the dressing mode of my Catholic Convent days, LizEst…….my grand-children love the way I dress…… they proudly say…… “Shosh of Nairobi is posh!!!!!”…….shosh is the youth language for Grandma

          • LizEst

            Indeed! Shosh is posh! I love it!…love you, too!

            Prayers for your country’s elections.

          • Thank you, Becky, thank you, LizEst. Glad you find joy in seeing this old face of mine!!!!! Yes we sure need lots of Prayers that God will spare our country the Violence we experienced in 2007/8

          • Becky Ward

            Nope….I had nothing to do with the picture getting here! But I agree with Liz that it’s nice to ‘see’ you Mary!

    • Anthony_Lilles

      I love your prayer — He is the only One who can lead us on right paths.  For the way we must go is the way He alone understands and knows.

  • ” This is why the Lord respects human freedom, even when it is the source of great sorrow.” And I suppose this is where what we can sometimes feel is “giving up” our liberty is in fact setting us free. We misuse our freedom and fall into situations that bring pain and sorrow. By surrendering to God, we may not stop experiencing pain, but we can at least allow it to be transformed.  

  • Camila

    Dear Dr. Lilles,

    I was reading the CCC and I thought of this article especially when you say “Divine freedom is hidden in difficult events”. I read article 62 where the CCC states “God formed Israel as his people by freeing them from slavery in Egypt”…

    When we live through difficult events we are faced with a choice right? to say as the saints do “blessed be God” OR not. The freedom lie in leaving the slavery of the world (this could be understood in a myriad of ways ie the world per se or the world of self-love for example) and going into the “desert” just like the people of Israel. Where we can be alone with the alone and be FREE from slavery.

    In a way the story of the people of Israel is the story of each soul traveling through the night and into freedom! (ok, maybe I’m just stating the obvious, but this is coming as such an eureka moment for me!)

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