“The last judgement shall fill sinners with terror, but will be a source of joy and sweetness to the elect; for the Lord will then give praise to each one according to their works.”
- St. Alphonsus Maria de Liguria.
As the year is coming to a close most business institutions might have made evaluations and analysis to know either their financial gain or loses: to ascertain the progress or the otherwise of their business activities. This gives them the idea to know which plan or direction to make a forecast for the next fiscal year. In business circles they call this ”stock-taking.”
In much similar way the church is inviting us to have a ”SPIRITUAL STOCK-TAKING” as the church is winding up to close our liturgical year. So our readings remind us that this world will come to an end one day. We have no knowledge of when or how, but that end will certainly come!
It is within this context that Malachi in the first reading prophesied about the day of retribution and judgement: where the Lord will punish the wicked and transgressions and reward those who remained faithful to Him till the end.
So as Christians it behooves on us to honestly make assessments of ourselves how we have lived our lives throughout this year. Know that when the Lord appears in His glory each one will receive the sentence they merited while on this earth. The just will enter with Him into eternal glory but the wicked will go to their place of suffering, sorrow and remorse. Where do you belong?
Judgement will seal our eternal fate. Unfortunately, the thought of death is a frightening one for most of us; but it is one of the realities that confront our human existence. It would be utter folly, then, to try to ignore or forget it!
Therefore, the question, ”How will I fare if I am called before the judgement seat of God today?” is worth contemplating. The hope is that it is never too late to make amends. God is working on you... He has not given up on you... There is always a second chance to grab... Take advantage of that!
Apostle Paul in our second reading addresses a pertinent situation where some individuals in the Christian community were unwilling to earn their daily bread and were abusing the charity of their fellow Christians.
There are some Catholics who are too lazy to be serious with their faith principles but are also quick with prejudices, judgment and demanding preferential treatments from the others. We are challenged to avoid all of these attitudes and be up and doing. As a Christian just walk the talk... Challenge yourself... Put your faith into action... This is what the saints did. Your good works will save you on the last day!
Jesus Christ finalizes all in the gospel reading that the end time will surely come but it still remains a mystery as to when and how. We should not allow ourselves to be misled by all the negativities happening in the world or anyone pretending to be Him. Also, the last days will come with persecution for those who believe Him and are His disciples. He encourages that we should not be afraid, but by our perseverance we would secure our lives.
My dear sister and brother in Christ, today Jesus has reminded you that your end is coming, that you should put your ”spiritual account” in order. This is an act of God’s mercy... He does not need you... It is you who need Him... Don't risk your own eternal welfare. Try to repair your broken relationship with God!
May the Lord increase your faith.
Stay blessed... Be hopeful... Enjoy the chills but bundle up!.. Love you.
Fr. Emmanuel hails from Ghana and is passionate about the Gospel and bringing the love of Christ to all people. He speaks several languages, enjoys soccer and cooking, and loves St. Francis of Assisi.