Monday 31st August – Monday of week 22 of the year
Reflection: 1 Thessalonians 4: 13-18
MAKING A CHOICE FOR HEAVEN
“It is appointed for men to die once and after that comes judgment (Heb 9:27). And this judgment, based on our lives here on earth will determine what eternity will be for us -Heaven or Hell. Each time we hear about Hell, our natural response is to reject it: “God forbid!” we would say. This is a good response of course, yet, the choice of Heaven lies in our very hands. Jesus’ country men in today’s gospel reading lost the transformation Jesus’ visit was to bring because they rejected him out of familiarity “Is he not the son of Joseph the carpenter?”
Israel was God’s chosen people. They had the laws and the prophets and it was through them that God planned to save mankind but all these good things slipped off their hands to the advantage of the gentiles, because the Jews failed to recognize and accept the Messiah. Little wonder Jesus told the Pharisees: “the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a nation producing the fruits of it.” (Mt 21: 43).
How about us? We have the privilege of being Catholic Christians. Are we going to embrace this gift? Beloved, how terrible it will be, if after professing Jesus Christ, we hear the words: “I never knew you (Mt 7:21); “away from me, you that are under God’s curse! Away to the fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels” (Mt 25:41). Indeed, God forbid it! We can only forbid this by living in obedience to God each day. When we do, then like St Paul tells us in the first reading, we will realize that death is simply a passage from this world to blessed union with our eternal Father (1Thess 4:14).
PRAYER: Eternal Father, give us your grace to serve you wholly, so that at the end of our sojourn here on earth, we may inherit your kingdom where you live forever. Amen.
KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 157 – Will we be brought to judgment after death?
The so-called particular or personal judgment occurs at the moment of death of the individual. The general judgment, which is also called the Last Judgment, occurs on the Last Day, at the end of the world, when the Lord comes again.
HIDE A TREASURE: “The quality of each person’s work will be seen when the day of Christ exposes it. For on that day, fire will reveal everyone’s work; the fire will test it and show its real quality” 1 Corinthians 3:13 GNB
Today’s Readings: 1 Thessalonians 4: 13-18; Psalm 96: 1, 3-5, 11-13; Luke 4: 16-30