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  • Writer's pictureDr. Anthony Lilles

Living Faith and Freedom to Live the Faith

Why do those who pray need to express their faith by acts of mercy, by speaking the truth, and by working for the common good? It is because their faith is a living faith, a faith animated by friendship with God. In such faith, God is present in a real, personal and particular way. This faith glimpses how much God has implicated Himself in human affairs and it desires to implicate itself in divine affairs. In such faith, the heart is open, completely vulnerable to the Lord who has made Himself vulnerable to us. In love animated faith, His love for humanity becomes the passion of our hearts. This heart to heart is meant to hold up each moment of our lives, but it reaches a special note of intimacy only in the silence of prayer. Those who know this divine love yearn for the freedom to share that love with the whole world. They are compelled to be concerned about the things that concern His Heart. God really is concerned about humanity, about our lives together, about the most vulnerable and about the truth. So God's friends, those who have dedicated themselves to living faith, they want to make their voices heard and work for a society that is ordered to the truth—the truth about who God is, who we are before Him, and the truth about how we are to live together in love. This means being able to protect and promote all that is good, holy, tender, authentic and noble about sacred and frail humanity. In the United States today this freedom is gravely threatened by those who do not understand God's love and who view living faith as an impediment to progress. Such ignorance and misunderstanding is not fundamentally political or cultural problem, it is spiritual, a problem in the heart. Only prayer and real dialogue—dialogue radically rooted in the truth—can change hearts. Only the truth can set us free. God delights in all that is genuinely human. He delights in just laws and fairness. He is always at work in the hearts of those with good will and in the events of life to help us enjoy what He enjoys. He loves us this much. Thus, as we work against unjust laws, not only here in America, but all over the world where ever people are not free to live by living faith, we must proceed confident in his love and providence. Here, more than anything else, prayer opens up the space for Him to bless our solidarity with one another. With divine blessing, we discover the freedom to delight in what God delights in when He gaze on us and the courage to do what needs to be done so that those we love might have this freedom too.

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