…. “Everyone who commit sin is a slave of sin.…So if the SON frees you, then you will truly be free”
I was born and raised in a Traditional Latino Catholic family. Every day at 6 pm, my mother would gather my brothers and sisters together in the living room to pray the Rosary. Every Sunday we attended Mass faithfully and my entire family was actively involved in the life of our parish back in my home country.
Despite my religious upbringing, when life presented difficult challenges, my love for Jesus and the Church teachings collapsed. I closed my heart to Jesus’ truth and fell for the lies of abortion; lies that nearly destroyed my life.
“If you remain in my WORD, you will be my disciple, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (John 8:31). How many times did I hear these words yet failed to heed them?
For years after my abortion, I allowed pride and arrogance to suppress Jesus’ words. I kept myself hostage in the belief that I was fine, that being single and successful were great accomplishments in life. I boasted of the freedom to do and be whatever I most desired. But my life was empty, as more lies were needed to fill up that hole, the wounds in my heart became infected, and the hurt in my soul all the greater. There was no freedom, only an unbearable suffocating life. I “truly was enslaved to my sins”. (John 8:34)
Deep down, I knew the truth, that when I aborted my baby, I rejected my own life as well. I rejected God Himself, and I needed His mercy and grace to heal. I was- and still am- in great need of God’s saving mercy in my life (God never left; it was I who left God). There was no room for Jesus in my heart (John 8:40). There were so many attachments, lies and idols I needed to remove from my life. I was desperately in need of a resurrection, a Savior, and that was, and is, another truth the Lord is allowing me to see as I make room for Him in my heart.
Only now do I understand that remaining in Jesus’ words means more than saying I believe in it. It means embracing that word and putting it into practice in my own life, even when it is difficult. Because it is difficult! But there is a great consolation when Jesus tells us that is the only way; ‘If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples.” (John 8:31). I want to follow Jesus and draw closer to Him. I want to breathe in His words and make them mine. I want to be preserved in His grace and live in His freedom.
There is no doubt this journey is one that we cannot do alone. I thank the Lord for all the holy people He is bringing into my life for guidance, encouragement, and community. But above all as He promises in the Scriptures, He walks alongside His faithful disciples even through “heated furnaces”. JESUS, I TRUST IN YOU!
“Blessed are they who have kept the WORD with a generous heart and yield a harvest through perseverance”. (Lk 8:15)