Year C – Thirteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time – June 30, 2013 – Gospel Reflection

1 Kings 19:16b, 19-21; Psalm 16:1-1. 5. 7-8, 9-10, 11 (R/. cf. 5a); Galatians 5:1, 13-18; 1 Samuel 3:9, John 6:68c; Luke 9:51-62

In 1941, President Franklin Roosevelt gave a speech naming the four freedoms Americans cherished:  freedom of speech, freedom to worship, freedom from want, and freedom from fear.  Americans have valued freedom from the beginning of our country.  Freedom is also a biblical value.  St. Paul writes. “For freedom Christ has set us free; so stand firm and do not submit again to the yoke of slavery.”  The slavery Paul refers to is the slavery of sin, which chokes off our freedom and limits what we do.  Freedom reveals itself in living by the Spirit, which means living in love.  A disciple of Jesus freely chooses to follow Jesus and his teachings.  We do not use our freedom to enslave or manipulate others, much less to oppress or respond violently to those who oppose us.  God gives us the strength to commit ourselves to Jesus, not letting anything, neither comforts nor family ties, keep us from following him.  With the dedication of Elisha, who burned his oxen behind him, we set out each day freely to follow Jesus.

How have you used your freedom this day?

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