Monday, June 6, 2011

Why Free Will?

The other day I wrote about free will, and the purpose of a free will and the need for limits of free will, but I neglected to mention that critical question about free will that perhaps some were asking: Why?

If we were created with a purpose for our life – but some of us will choose not to fulfill it; if we were going to be making mistakes – sins, and if we were going to be suffering so much in this life because of our and others’ choices, why didn’t this God Who so loves us make us without free will? Why didn’t He just make us as perfect as he intended us to be?

Well, for a start, He did create many perfect things, which were and are just as He intended them, and they never choose to sin and never suffer the pains of this human life. They’re called rocks. But I suspect He doesn’t find as much pleasure in rocks as He does in us, despite our imperfections.

This blog is to lay forth my thoughts on matters in a simple way, to ease my anxieties about questions in a simple way that (hopefully) I might recall in the future. So this morning when I read Fr. Stinissen’s simple words on WHY God gave us free will, I thought they were worth stating here:

If God had created us in a celestial state from the beginning, so that we beheld him face to face, we would surely never have sinned, but something important would have been missing. We would not be able to share in the mutual giving, which is the essence of the Trinity. Our desire to give ourselves would never be satisfied, since we would see clearly that we gave nothing, that it was God who gave everything, even our love for him.

If we are subject to trials here on earth … it is because in eternity God wants to say to us: “You have given me something. It is not only I who give, but rather we give to each other.” … To do something for God, belongs to our earthly life. … It is necessary for us to have an imperfect freedom so that we can give. If we want to be able to say Yes to God, we must also be able to say No.

It is an essential element in our faith that human beings can give something to God, that, as Catholic theologians express it, we have “merit”. Without this, we do not participate fully in the life of the Trinity, which consists of a mutual giving and receiving.

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