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Friends and Family

Does God really know what is best for you? Do you believe that with all your heart and mind? If you do, then you will also believe that when God sends you something that is difficult, you will recognize that He has His hand in the event in some way. That means, of course, everything; not just the things He gave you that you like, but all of them.

Thus, what about your family? Again, not just the nice ones, but also that crazy uncle that no one likes talking about. Are you able to say that God chose him to be in your life because He knows that it is good for you? Your parents, your siblings, your cousins, etc., they are all chosen specifically for you for your good; and you are chosen for their good. Although there are times when bad things happen and people have to part from one another, generally speaking God wants you to learn from your family (especially those you have a hard time getting along with).

Someone once said "friends are the family you choose". To take this to the fullest, that means that you believe that God did not choose right and that you need to fix the situation (and that is evil to say). We are all supposed to learn from the challenges and struggles that God chooses to send us; not just the challenges and struggles that we are willing to tolerate.

To choose your friends (which is perfectly fine to do in itself) because you are rejecting your family that God chose for you is a selfish attempt to place oneself on the throne of God. Yes, of course, a person can choose their friends; and some of those friends can become as close as their original family. Yet, what is the motivation? If we are truly saying, "I'm stuck with my family, but I can choose whatever friends I want" is self-serving and prideful. It is an intentional avoidance of the very things that God wants to give you for your spiritual development.

We are not supposed to imagine that a life without challenges is a good thing. If everything is truly made easy, then there is no useful growth (consider the old movie "Wall-E"). That would be a life of childish self-satisfaction that never leads to spiritual maturity. Self-sacrifice is at the heart of our Catholic faith; let us make sure that it is at the heart of our lives as well.


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