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Day 17: Living Daily in Reality: Free Will

by Ernest O'Neill

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When you talk about living in reality, you're really talking about living in two worlds - there's the world around us with all its wrongs and disasters and chaos; On the other hand there's the world that we long for and try to create.

And even these two worlds are found in our own personal experience, because inside us we find an urge to do good and be kind and unselfish; but inside us there is also another part of us that wants its own way whatever the cost and is full of bad thoughts and desires.

We've been sharing that the son of the creator of the universe actually lived here about 2000 years ago and explained to us the reason for these two worlds. He said that his father made all of us - you yourself - inside him so that we could choose to be like him and live with him in love OR we could live alone ourselves and face the consequences. The result is this world that we see around us AND the dichotomy or double-mindedness that we see within us.

Our maker made it like this because he actually does care about you and me and wanted us to choose with our own wills whether to live with him and let him live in us or not. "Not" of course means nothingness because there is no life apart from him - but he wanted us to have the right to choose even that if we wanted to. This is why he also made us like himself and put his son's spirit within us - so that we could taste what it's like for him to live in us and for us to live with him.

He, of course, knows the life he has planned for himself in you - and he knows what you will do, yet he stands back, takes his hands off the wheel of your life, and bears in himself and in others the results of your actions and attitudes. Yet, all the time he is bringing about circumstances and nudging you in different ways towards his will for your life. But if he ever forces your will his way, he loses the whole purpose for creating you - your freely returned love !

So all our lives are mixtures of the things we do that our maker's son is doing through us with our acquiescence and things that we do independent of him; these latter things are what Christ talked about when he said that God "works all things according to the counsel of his will". So our lives are a complex combination of independent and co-operative decisions designed to draw us patiently towards the great mind and heart that designed our lives. They proceed by best and worse turns to the end that our Creator has always had in mind for each of us.

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