In the first reading today from 1 Thessalonians 3, St. Paul includes a beautiful prayer for his readers. “May the Lord make you increase and abound in love for one another and for all, just as we have for you, so as to strengthen your hearts, to be blameless in holiness before our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all his holy ones. Amen.” Couldn’t have said it better myself!
In the Gospel reading from Matthew 24, Jesus admonishes his disciples to “Stay awake! For you do not know on which day your Lord will come.” He then goes on to tell a couple of stories, one about a theif coming in the middle of the night, and another about a servant whose master has gone away. Jesus’ message is, of course, that we need to be prepared to meet our maker at any moment.
The Catholic teaching on salvation is in perfect harmony with these words of Jesus. The Church teaches that our eternal destiny is determined at the moment of our death. If we are in a state of unrepentant mortal sin, our soul is in jeopardy. If that is the case, then we have “fallen asleep at the wheel.” We must be diligent about renewing our commitment to Jesus every moment of every day. It is not a pretty thought, but you or I could not be around tomorrow. So that begs the question…if you were to “meet your maker” today, would you be ready? Stay awake!!
Father, help us to be diligent in our faith. May we renew our commitment to Jesus every moment of every day, that we may spend eternity with you. Amen.