How exciting! I just found out that I am going on a one year trip to Europe tomorrow!! I guess I should think about what I'm going to do there but.... nah, it can wait. What's on TV?
Now if you are thinking that I have completely lost my mind; you would be right. Leaving tomorrow for Europe and - I'm not even thinking about it? Gonna be gone for a year and - I'm not gonna begin getting ready?
But isn't that how 99.9% of us seem to live our lives? This life - if long and well lived - may last us, oh, say 90 years? Wouldn't that be considered a good, long life? Ok, let's go for the record - how about 120 years? Add another 10 just for bragging rights - okay, you've got 130 years. Now compare that with eternity - as in forever, and ever, and ever, and ever, and ever, and ever, and ever, and ever, and ever, and ever, and ever, and ever, and ever, and ever, and... you get the picture.
That 130 ain't looking so long anymore, is it? Ok. NOW; how much time are you spending preparing for that eternity - and how much time are you focusing on the 130?
I know people who can spout off practically every sport statistic you could image about their favorite team. Let me tell you; that takes real time, effort and dedication. Watching the sports channel, listening to sports radio, reading the sports news, talking with friends about sports - unlimited time! All going toward that 130. Zero preparation for the forever, and ever, and ever, and - you get the point.
Substitute practically any passion, expertise, knowledge, etc. that someone has in this world concerning something IN this world - and you have the same scenario. People are able to take time to prepare for the forever, and ever, and ever, and... But they choose not to.
What's on TV?
This would be me standing at customs going into Europe. "Well Officer, I guess I meant to get a passport and visa but... there was a REALLY good show on TV that I just couldn't miss - so how bout' cha just overlook this one time, okay?"
How likely will a Customs Official be to overlook my apparent non-effort to prepare to enter his country - in other words - my disrespect of His nation's rules, laws and procedures? Now throw my excuses in there of just being way too busy with my own stuff to bother - think that's gonna be the big convincer?
Why do we treat God as less important than a Customs Official? Since the dawn of creation, God has sent us His very own word - written down in our own language for heaven's sake - outlining every one of HIS kingdom's rules, laws and procedures. How many of us spend as much time pouring over, and memorizing, that - as we do sports team stats, best shopping spots, brands of coffee, hottest tech tools, etc., etc.? NOW the excuses will have to get more complicated; like, "Uh, sorry God, I couldn't read."
Then add to that, He sends the sacrifice of the Mass where, every day in every Catholic church around the globe, a priest brings the very body and blood of His Son Jesus back to life to give incredible power and grace to every one who just shows up. Now it's "Uh, sorry God, I couldn't read AND I couldn't walk."
And of course, in this day and age, there is actually Christian radio where, you can get information about Him and that kingdom, 24/7. "Uh, sorry God, I couldn't read AND I couldn't walk AND I couldn't hear!" Then add in the fact that, with a simple request, you can get a Priest or member of the Church to bring Jesus Christ's very body present in the Eucharist to you at your own home, if you are housebound... "Uh, sorry God, I couldn't read AND I couldn't walk AND I couldn't hear AND I had no doorbell."
And of course, if you actually DO have none of those things available to study to learn about the kingdom of God where you hope to be for ever, and ever, and ever, and ever, and... - all you need do is step outside. "The heavens declare the Glory of God, the sky proclaims His handiwork. One day to the next conveys that message, one night to the next imparts that knowledge." Psalm 19: 1-3 Does a beautiful sky make you search for more knowledge about our great God? Does a flower bud opening to its beauty make you yearn to know how that reflects God's? God's fingerprints are on absolutely everything He made - sky and sea, mountain and valley, animal and.... you. Get to know more about Him, now - while you still have the chance. Otherwise, you may find yourself saying:
"Um, God, I'm sorry, but I just never got around to learning anything about You, Your kingdom and how You wanted me to live on earth so as to be ready to enter here, BUT - I can dazzle you with all the sports statistics I know!!"
Think that European Customs Official would buy that one? Now, for the scariest thought of all, Think God will?
Ashley and Susan
Two women asking the world to not just hope, but to Hope in Love.