October 21: Freedom from Sin is Freedom for Life
‘The Cross becomes a new center of gravity for bringing together what is divided.’ Pope Emeritus Benedict
Anyone who wrestles with sexual sin (or been impacted by those who do) understands the divided soul. On the one hand, we long to give ourselves to others meaningfully, with integrity; on the other hand, we are driven and derided by vanities. These addictions are distortions of what is good—each of us, no matter what our sins, has ceased to be a good gift for others. But split off from that value, our needs for love and significance become mistaken for erotic ones and we cease to do the hard work necessary to value a whole person. Divided souls unwittingly divide others and become users.
The good news: Jesus Christ has the last word on disordered desire. In his amazing book ‘Heart of the Gospel’, Christopher West contends that Christ’s death and resurrection can transform our desires by liberating our hearts from the domination of lust. No matter how deep the soul’s divide, or the misbegotten desires that flow from it: Jesus longs to unite Himself to our humanity and so restore His life-giving purposes for it.
That has huge implications for our sexuality, as God has given our bodies, in the words of John Paul ll, the awesome power ‘to express love, and precisely that love in which the human person becomes a gift and through this gift fulfills the very nature of his being and existence.’
God reconciles us to the gift that we are! For me, that means that I am not free unless I am reconciled to the generative, focused power of my masculine sexuality and am intent on working that out lovingly in relation to the opposite gender. No small thing for a person divided by gender inferiority and same-gender attraction! The same applies to a woman who for very good reasons has no reason to believe that a man is or could be a good gift to her humanity.
That man has come, and His name is Christ Jesus. His purpose at Calvary was to pull up the dividing walls of sin (in all its facets) and to unite one new humanity (Eph.2:14-18). That applies both to our personal and interpersonal commitments. I can say without shadow that the unity my wife and I experience after 33 years together has become the earthy, creative ground of our common existence. Its abundance leaves ‘gay’ life in the dust.
Let’s not empty the Cross of its power. For the ‘homosexual’ and others under lust’s power, the Gospel is life-shaking, life-giving news.
Join us as we pray for:
1. Texas, Dean Greer, Coordinator: For new regional leadership to be identified and raised-up, for existing groups and for new groups to be established.
2. Christian Concern (www.christianconcern.org) United Kingdom: For the Lord’s protection and provision for Christian Concern as they stand for religious freedom in a secular society.
3. Syracuse Diocese: Discernment for timing and team of new Living Waters group.
“Courage for Pope Francis, that he would ensure that the Church becomes a clear fountain of transformation for persons with same-sex attraction!”