Discernment and Interior Freedom

Posted by Fr. James Mason:

Look at some of the practical steps in discerning.  First the facts, what am I discerning? Second, prayer, have I prayed on this?  Simple question but often overlooked, may be it is only a suggestion from another who is influential in my life and I have let that be enough and not given it back to God.  Even if it is the bishop you still must discern and pray on your own.  It is your decision.  As with all true decisions there must be freedom.  Am I free to say yes or no?  I could never be a priest because…  What is God’s will and have I given over my likes and dislikes to him and allowed him to mold me into the man he created me to be?  Once again am I being unduly pressured, is this my decision, and am I free to make it.   “When God Asks for an Undivided Heart” by Fr. Andrew Apostolici is a great book in this area.  What happens when I pray, can I share these experiences with someone trained in this area, a spiritual director?  As we grow in pray we should begin to see more and more with God’s eyes and not our own, this is true freedom, interior freedom.  Which dream or vocation when I pray and think about giving everything to God brings me more peace in the long run?  A consistent inner peace, recognizing that there will be struggle, the cross, but a good struggle for the perfection God has called us to.  It is becoming aware of God’s call slowly in your life and then having the courage to pursue it whatever it may be.  The initiative lies with God and it must always be left to God.  We must allow God to work.  The perfect examples, Jesus at Gesthamane “Lord, not my will, but your will be done,” and Mary “Be it done unto me according to your Word.”

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