It only takes a quick reading of today's Gospel to
discover that freedom is a key element in any authentic Christian spirituality. Our deepest freedom is the ability to be whom God wants us to be. That might sound rather vague, but it is the farthest thing from vague you could imagine. God wants us to experience peace, joy, love. It's probably true that, in this life, most of us will not be totally at peace, totally joyful and totally loving, but these are the ideals towards which we are encouraged to move.

There are so many things that hold us back from living the full and free life that Jesus intended for us. At times, these things are so much a natural part of our lives that we hardly even notice them any more. We get so used to these barriers to freedom that we can't see how large an obstacle to our freedom that they have actually become.

As we go through life, what may be the biggest
obstacle most of us will meet is the barrier to freedom that is created by our attachments. In fact, if
we ever succeeded in getting rid of all of our attachments, we would be totally free. That is a lifelong battle and one in which we must constantly engage. The first step in any battle is recognizing the enemy. If we don't know against whom we are fighting, we will have no chance of winning the contest.

What threatens us or makes us angry? Do we get very upset when we think that we might lose something that we own? Are there some parts of our lives that we refuse to discuss with anyone? As we slowly discover what is holding us back from being truly free, we will, at the same time, have the chance of breaking the chains that bind us.
                   Peace,    Fr. John

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