Metanoia or conversion is the gradual awakening of awareness to the order of God and is a pure gift. The gift of conversion is ignited into flame filling us with God Himself through love. Grace transforms us to love God above all else and enables us to live in freedom and to live a moral life. God awakens the will to cooperate with the Holy Spirit to seek to live a virtuous life and accomplish God’s will. In the theology of grace according to St. Augustine, grace is not a gift given because of the good works we do, but for the good works we may do. If one is in love one willingly gives him or her self freely for the sake of love. Grace and freedom work hand in hand for the transformation into the new creation. God and the person are working in relationship. Grace draws us into relationship, to love God, ourselves and our neighbor. Grace which is interior draws us outward. This is St. Augustine’s pinnacle in his theology of grace. When we experience the grace and the love of God we cannot help but reach out to another with this fire of love. In freedom, we can choose to accept or reject God’s grace and self communicating love. Because of St. Augustine’s past life he believed he could not have been saved because he himself did not freely acknowledge the grace of God. It was only when the Holy Spirit moved him was he led to conversion . It was the movement of the Holy Spirit that led St. Augustine to also believe that only those who were moved by the Holy Spirit were given this gift of grace.
Have a most blessed week
Your brother in Christ,
Hermits of St. Giles
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