By Fr. Roy Cimagala
THIS is not meant to scare anyone, but the fact is that the end of time, the end of the world can come anytime. If we have some common sense, we should know that the natural thing for us to do is to be always prepared, since we would not know how much time we have left.
The gospel reading of Thursday of the last week (the 34th) of liturgical year reminds us of this reality. “There will be signs in the sun, the moon, and the stars, and on earth nations will be in dismay, perplexed by the roaring of the sea and the waves,” Christ said.
“People will die of fright in anticipation of what is coming upon the world, for the powers of the heavens will be shaken. And then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. But when these signs begin to happen, stand erect and raise your heads because your redemption is at hand.” (Lk 21,25-28)
There, we cannot say that we are not amply warned. Still, we should not be overly worried about this. This is a fact of life that should be taken with due consideration. What this should do is simply for us to be always properly prepared.
In fact, if we are properly guided by our Christian faith, we would look forward to the end of time since that would make the transition to our eternal and definitive life when we are promised that there will be a new heaven and a new earth. (cfr. Rev 21,4) Our life here on earth is just some kind of testing ground to see if what God wants us to be is also what we want ourselves to be—his image and likeness, sharers of his divine life and nature.
And the preparation for this eventuality need not involve anything extraordinary. It is enough that whatever we do in our daily routine is done with God and for God. That way, we would always be motivated to do things in the best way that we can, leading us to be more and more like God. And even if we cannot escape the limitations and imperfections of our work, God will always understand and would be happy to see us working with that intention.
What God would consider is the faith, hope and love that beat in our hearts as we do our daily activities. It is not so much the human success in our work that is important. Of course, if we do things with God and for God, it is very likely that our daily activities would have good effects and results. But these should not be the main consideration.
And so, it stands to reason that during the day we make many pit stops, so to speak, so we would know whether we are still on the right path, with the proper direction. We would have the chance to rectify and purify our intentions.
And at the end of the day, it would be good that we make it a habit to make a general examination of conscience that should end with a loving expression of sorrow for whatever mistake, shortcoming or sin we may have committed during the day. That way, we express our intention to be reconciled with God always. That in the end is what truly matters!