We have to be more familiar with what we may term as the right pro-choice. That’s because what is now more popular, especially in the more developed countries, the so-called liberated ones, is the wrong one, the bad one. And we have to do something about it. At least, we have to be clear about why it is wrong and why we should protect ourselves from it.
In these countries, it is now lawful to abort babies, for example, and to resort to divorce, even a no-fault divorce, to have same-sex marriage, to practice euthanasia, and a long litany of practices that go against God’s law and our very human nature.
We have to remember that our life will always involve a choice. That’s because we are free. We have a will whose proper exercise is precisely to make a choice. We have the capacity to shape our own life precisely because of our power to choose.
But in all this, we should not forget that there is God who gave us that power. And that power is subject always to his law which, in our case, is called the natural moral law. That power is not simply generated by us and subject purely to our own designs.
Stressing the point that our life will always involve a choice, St. Augustine once said: “Two loves have made two cities — love of self unto the contempt of God, and love of God unto the contempt of self.” In short, the choice we have to make is between God and ourselves.
We have to train ourselves to make the proper choice. We always have to choose God before anyone and anything else. And we have to do this explicitly many times, because we have the tendency to take this choice for granted, not realizing that we have begun to distance ourselves from God.
In this regard, we have to make sure that God is given priority especially when we are doing many good things. Let’s learn that precious lesson Christ is teaching us in that episode about the sisters Martha and Mary. (cfr. Lk 10, 38-42)
Martha was doing well in welcoming Christ to her house and in serving him. But when she complained to Christ about her sister, Mary, who was sitting before Christ, attentively listening to what he was saying, Martha received a kind rebuke: “Martha, Martha, you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed — or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” (41-42)
This episode is very relevant to many of us. Like Martha, we are also believers of God, we can welcome him to our homes, we serve him, we do many good things, and yet he may not be the first priority of our life. We can easily be taken over by our earthly and temporal affairs at the expense of our duty to God.
This is when we have to make a conscious choice to make God first in all the aspects of our life.
This is the right pro-choice to have. We may strengthen this sentiment by praying, for example: “God, my Father, / may I love you in all things and above all things. / May I reach the joy which you have prepared for me in heaven. /
“Nothing is good that is against your will, / and all that is good comes from your hand. / Place in my heart a desire to please you / and fill my mind with thoughts of your love, / so that I may grow in your wisdom and enjoy your peace. / Amen.”
We need to humble ourselves to be able to say this prayer from our heart, with great faith and love.
Fr. Roy Cimagala is the Chaplain of the Center for Industrial Technology and Enterprise, Talamban, Cebu City (firstname.lastname@example.org)/WDJ