Are we truly ready should Christ come back today. Have we done God's will to the best of our ability, and when we have failed, have we asked forgiveness, gotten back up, and tried again?
If not, we are not ready.
We so much want what we want, but above everything we should really want to someday enter the Kingdom of Heaven. All the material things that make life so easy. All the great trips and comforts. They are wonderful, and I feel so blessed to have them, but they don't make me closer to God.
The way I live my life. They way I approach other people. The way I minister, and, especially, the way and how often I pray do far more to help me achieve the Kingdom than all the computers, cars, good food, art supplies, clothes can ever do.
And I must have faith. I must believe in what I cannot see. I must finally declare, as did St. Thomas, "My Lord and my God!"
One of the four readings yesterday at Mass is from Hebrews 11: 1-16:
1 Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. 2 For by it the people of old received their commendation. 3 By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible.4 By faith Abel offered to God a more acceptable sacrifice than Cain, through which he was commended as righteous, God commending him by accepting his gifts. And through his faith, though he died, he still speaks. 5 By faith Enoch was taken up so that he should not see death, and he was not found, because God had taken him. Now before he was taken he was commended as having pleased God. 6 And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him. 7 By faith Noah, being warned by God concerning events as yet unseen, in reverent fear constructed an ark for the saving of his household. By this he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.
8 By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place that he was to receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going. 9 By faith he went to live in the land of promise, as in a foreign land, living in tents with Isaac and Jacob, heirs with him of the same promise. 10 For he was looking forward to the city that has foundations, whose designer and builder is God. 11 By faith Sarah herself received power to conceive, even when she was past the age, since she considered him faithful who had promised. 12 Therefore from one man, and him as good as dead, were born descendants as many as the stars of heaven and as many as the innumerable grains of sand by the seashore.
13 These all died in faith, not having received the things promised, but having seen them and greeted them from afar, and having acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth. 14 For people who speak thus make it clear that they are seeking a homeland. 15 If they had been thinking of that land from which they had gone out, they would have had opportunity to return. 16 But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city.
What direction does God want from me right now? I am waiting. I am praying. I know He will direct me along the path He wants me to take, and when I stumble, He will lift me up.
The same priest quoted C. S. Lewis on Facebook yesterday:
"The sins of the flesh are bad, but they are the least bad of all sins. All the worst pleasures are purely spiritual: the pleasure of putting other people in the wrong, of bossing and patronizing and spoiling sport, and back-biting, the pleasures of power, of hatred. For there are two things inside me, competing with the human self which I must try to become. They are the Animal self, and the Diabolical self. The Diabolical self is the worse of the two. That is why a cold, self-righteous prig who goes regularly to church may be far nearer to hell than a prostitute. But, of course, it is better to be neither."
~ Mere Christianity
We must have Faith, even as small as that grain of mustard seed, and we must follow Jesus to the best of our abilities. We must allow His Will be Done!