February, 2008 edition
Reviewed by Ryan Anderson
Interior Freedom | by Jacques Philippe
In a world that places more demands on people's shoulders than ever before—from keeping up with endless strains of e-mail to meeting the next deadline, from keeping the boss happy to keeping the spouse and kids happy—how does the Christian retain a sense of freedom? In his beautifully written Interior Freedom, Fr. Jacques Philippe takes readers by the hand to rediscover the freedom that comes from Christ alone.
While the peace of God surpasses all understanding, Philippe makes it seem attainable as he draws from Scripture, literature, and the saints to offer simple advice on how to find peace in the midst of our complicated modern lives.
This inner peace comes from the freedom offered in Christ. And learning to accept ourselves and the situation in which God has placed us is the first step to beginning the transformation that he desires for us. As we come to realize that our true happiness lies not in the will to power but in the power given to us by Christ to accept and follow the will of God, we will begin to experience true interior freedom—even in the midst of exterior burdens and chaos.
Philippe touches on the trials that other people may cause in our lives, the redeeming purpose of suffering, the dynamic that grace and law exercise in our response to the gospel, and the daily necessity of the theological virtues of faith, hope, and love. Of course, the greatest of these—and what we will take with us into eternity—is love. And Philippe counsels readers that the best way to prepare for eternal life is to live love in the present moment. The truly free person “is the one who has nothing left to lose,” for he has realized that all of life is a gift of love, to be given and received freely. Written in short digestible segments, Interior Freedom is a perfect book to use for inspiration during times of prayer, as devotional reading, and to keep on your nightstand.