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Question 59

Hi, Fr Christopher  If our lives are the results of our own decisions and external circumstances, then is there any point to praying to God when we face difficult times? Does He decide if He will intervene to help us? Should we therefore merely pray that God's will be done in everything and for strength to endure whatever we must put up with?  



Answer to Question 59


I think you may have misunderstood what I said in your previous question. Our lives are not predetermined and God doesn't interfere with our free will, but that does not mean that our prayers to him are meaningless. We have the choice of joining ourselves to him. As I said last time, if someone is opposed to God then he follows a life of his choosing without God. On the other hand if someone chooses to place himself in Godís providence then his life becomes a synergy, a cooperation of two wills Ė Godís and manís. This is essential for salvation because it is not only through our own efforts that we will find salvation; our efforts will produce nothing without divine grace, but neither will divine grace without our participation bring about what is sought; grace acts in us and for us through our efforts. Both combine in a person to bring progress and carry him to salvation. God's foreknowledge is unfathomable, but it does not infringe on man's freedom. God foresees how a man will freely act and makes dispositions accordingly.