Monday in the Second Week of Easter

Who determines how you are going to live?  Automatically we would say, I determine how I am going to live, but would it be true? In almost all cases someone else determines how you are going to live. If one gets cancer, the doctor sets up a schedule of chemo therapy for you once a week for six weeks. This rearranges your life in a major way. If you want to survive and follow the doctors orders he is determining how you are going to live in the six weeks following. It’s easy to think of all kinds of examples of how other people determine how you are to live – your boss at work, the rule of the community you join, the traffic laws on how you are to drive and on and on. Looked at this way it appears we have very little freedom.

I once saw a small poster on my sister’s refrigerator stating that our attitude is the only thing we can change. Our life then is a response to all the determinisms we live by.

All this came to me when I read the words of the first reading that say all that happened to Jesus took place because God’s hand, who willed it long ago, and planned it to take place.  Can we not say that what happens in our life is planned and determined by God? Our free will is our response to this. 

When we see the trees swaying we know there is a breeze, when we respond in faith to what is happening to us we know we are being born anew, born from above – in other words actualizing our baptism.