FINDING TRUE FREEDOM

What is so uniquely great about our Christian Faith?

You might reply, “The forgiveness of our sins through Jesus’ Death and Resurrection.”

Yes—it’s true. Forgiveness through Jesus is a beautiful thing. But our lavish God gives us even more than forgiveness. He paves a path to freedom from the slavery of sin.

Romans 6:6-7 teaches, “We know that our old self was crucified with him so that the sinful body might be destroyed, and we might no longer be enslaved to sin. For he who has died is freed from sin” (RSV-2CE).

Every sin in our life has numbered days. A day will come, through the victory of Jesus, that it is gone from our life. We are not slaves to that sin. It has no ultimate power over us.

How can you live out your faith in this glorious victory? I use 4 steps (4 Rs) to move from victory to victory over sin in my life. But take note: Each step is preceded by grace. Each step is preceded by dependence on God’s victory. I cannot bring about any of the steps through the force of my will, no matter how determined I am. I need God to go before me in every step.

1. Revelation

I need God to reveal how He wants me to grow. What is the next territory that He wants me to take? Which virtues is He calling me to grow into? Which sins is He calling me to stop? He wants me perfect, yes. But if He made me perfect all at once, I would fall to the greatest of sins and pridefully think I did it myself, scoffing at others who are still struggling. So, He reveals my path of holiness bit by bit. I ask Him to show me what victory He wants for me next.

2. Resolve

Even when I understand what He wants and why, I may not want to grow in that way. Often, I feel self-justified in my sin. Or like St. Augustine, I might want it, but not yet. I need the Holy Spirit to give me a firm resolve to grow in the way God is calling me to grow.

3. Remind

When I am resolved to not sin in a particular way, or to grow in a certain virtue, I find that the moments of life come fast. Before I have a chance to act differently, the moment is gone and I have found myself mired in the same patterns. I lose my temper with my child, I swear at the rude driver, I exaggerate a story to get attention. I need a reminder from the Holy Spirit to brace myself for the coming moment and ask for His help.

4. Response

Even with a reminder, I often still choose my old patterns of behavior. I don’t have the grace to respond in the way He is calling me to respond. I turn away from His call in the moment in favor of my sin. Recognizing my poverty of will, I ask for more help next time to respond in a way that pleases Him.

Over time, praying for each new step in my battle with particular sins, He answers my prayers and leads me to victory. I evaluate which step (grace) is missing. Do I need God to give me clearer understanding, firmer resolve, better reminders, or strength to respond? I ask for it, and I watch the power of Jesus’ Resurrection stream into my life in these ways to overwhelm my sin. By His grace, I have left many sins behind in the rearview mirror. I’m not the man I once was. There is victory in Jesus! We are no longer slaves to an endless cycle of the same sins in our lives!

Claim this good news. Claim your victory in Jesus. Confidently approach His throne and ask for these graces in your life. Take ground away from the dominion of sin in your life. You will be delighted to see God’s victory creating more space in your life for love and joy-filled sacrifice. The fruits of righteousness will abound in new ways. 

Blessed are you who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for you shall be satisfied!

MORE BY THIS AUTHOR

SPIRITUALITY & DEVOTION

At the National Eucharistic Congress, Decided Excellence Catholic Media - with the help of Bishop William Waltersheid - will be presenting "Beautiful Revelation: The Eucharistic Timeline". Throughout human history, God has left repeated proof of His presence in the Eucharist and that the Eucharist is the source and summit of our Salvation. God has given us the wisdom. Have you taken the time to understand? Read this spiritual journey through time to examine critical moments that God uses to reveal the truth of the Body of Christ.

This will close in 32 seconds