Being Prepared, Always

Being Prepared, Always

August 7, 2016 | N W | Eternal Life, Father Salvador, Self-Reflection

Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
August 7, 2016 – Year C
Readings: Wis 18:6-9 / Ps 33 / Heb 11:1-2, 8-19 / Lk 12:32-48
by Rev. Salvador Añonuevo, Pastor

My favorite teacher in high school was the one who used to tell us:  “You all study tonight, because tomorrow I am going to give you a surprise quiz.”  We all liked his methods, because with him, there were no surprises.   

With very, very few exceptions, this will not be the case insofar as our entry into life eternal is concerned.  I said there are a few exceptions, and we have a few here in our parish:  Deacon Ray and Tom Messier.  They had the privilege to know exactly and had the happiness of preparation, even to look forward to meeting Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. 

There was no surprise there.  If I have my choice, that’s the way I want it to go, if it’s God’s will.  But ordinarily, it’s going to be a surprise. 

In today’s gospel, Jesus said:  “You must be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.” 

But how do we prepare ourselves for His coming?  The sacred scriptures tell us that it is as simple as living the Gospel twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.  We all believe that God sees us wherever we are, whatever we do.  But we also know at the same time that He loves us unconditionally.  He is not watching each and every one of us as if we are all under surveillance, because He wants us to enjoy life in all its fullness.  And the key to experience this kind of life is to always be in close communion with God, the Source and the Author of life. 

But because of our human imperfections, we often forget who we are, and that is why Our Lord God has given us our Holy Mother Church to guide us.  He gave us His words to enlighten us.  And he gave us the sacraments to strengthen us.  And also, it definitely helps if we are in the company of people who love God so much that they take every opportunity to talk about Him. 

When we spend a good amount of time with certain friends, it means that we enjoy their company.  We perceive their presence in our lives as life-giving.  However, it is also important to ask ourselves every once in a while questions like:  “Are they the kind of friends I would like to be at my side when my days in this world are numbered?  Do I talk to them about my faith?  Can I freely share with them my personal relationship with my God and even, perhaps, my spiritual struggles, without fear of being misinterpreted or judged?  Is eternal life a regular part of our conversation?” 

If your answer is “yes” to all these questions and if these friends pray with you and never fail to remind you if you are doing something which is not in accordance with God’s commandments; if they serve as your spiritual companions and often remind you of God’s presence when you are together, then you have indeed found a pearl of great price. 

As we all gather here together, my dear brothers and sisters, in the sanctuary of Holy Name of Mary, as members of God’s family, Our Lord Jesus is not only in our midst spiritually, but He will give us His body, blood, soul, and divinity in Holy Communion, so that we may always have the strength to live in His presence and always be prepared for the day or the hour that He will welcome us into His eternal kingdom.