fate vs. the will

Are you one of those who attribute your successes to luck? Or, on the contrary, do you boast that the merits you get are due only to yourself? So, who is in control of our life, destiny (which for those of us who are believers is God’s decision) or our own will? This reflection that has disturbed man since the beginning of his existence is the story of an eternal struggle. Because if there is a superior design, we are not free. Fate that, therefore, would disappear behind the shadow of our ability to determine events. A dead end.

Faced with any event, from a catastrophe to the result of a job interview, people can assume two attitudes: believe that the result of what happened is due to “external” circumstances (luck or chance) or attribute the merits to themselves. . Let us define the concept of destiny as “the supernatural force that acts on human beings and the events that they face throughout their lives. This would be an inevitable succession of events from which no person can escape. The will, on the other hand, “is the intention or desire to do something with effort, courage and determination.”

“Who knows what fate has in store for me”, a phrase with which many people express their doubts, or hopes, about what will happen in the future. But that also implies that what happens does not depend exclusively on us. And that is where the power of a supreme being enters, the power of God. He chose the country where we were born, our parents, physical appearance, abilities, etc. None of these circumstances can be chosen by the human being. We couldn’t even choose our name.

At this point fate enters, which is not in our hands to change. There are external forces, events that delimit the life of each one, define what someone will be or do in the future. Such forces may be an expression of universal reason, creation, design, and the will of an all-powerful God.

But where destiny (which is the will of God) and the will of man converge is when the human being exercises his own free will (which is the power to think, choose and act for himself), and his own inner strength, to make their decisions, regardless of the external circumstances that they have had to live.

But, then, if God knows the destiny of each man, is it correct to speak of freedom? Of course yes, because free will is the condition of thought by virtue of which each individual can determine in absolute autonomy the purpose of his actions. No external force coming into play, no higher entity holding the strings of fate. Every aspect of a man’s actions and thought is reduced to an act of will.

A classic example is two people who were born into circumstances of extreme poverty. Growing up, one of them decides to be a gang member, murder and steal, while the other works and studies at the same time, starts a business and prospers exponentially. Thanks to the will, no matter what happens in the world, the individual is master of his own choice.

This 2023 will surely be the most difficult year for humanity, and we will all have to fulfill a destiny, which is already drawn for the world by God. However, the decisions that each one makes may mean his eternal salvation or a sad end. I am not only talking about the physical or material aspect, but about seeking that this divine destiny, which we cannot modify, converges with our own human will to find redemption, through our Lord Jesus Christ. Happy 2023!

fate vs. the will