Blog # 445 Three Questions
What did God say, ever? What is God saying, now? What will God say when our story and the story of creation is over?
We can arrive at definite answers to the first two questions. We might begin by quoting some of the Bible as the word of God. For example, in the first Book of the Bible God said let there be light. When God finished the work of creation God said it was good, and when God had created humankind in God's own image, God said that was very good. God said to Pharaoh let my people go. God said of Jesus this is my Beloved Son, listen to him. Jesus said of the Father and Himself we are one. And Jesus said follow me. Maybe you could find some time this week answering the question for yourself. 'What did God say in the past?"
The second question asks what is God saying now. If we are really willing to be honest, and there is no other way to be before ourselves and God, then we might have to say as our answer "not very much", or "nothing right now". Certainly such an answer would be better than a whole stream of words that would not be true. What is God saying to you as a unique individual, to your family, currently, this week, today? Only you can say, but I can and do invite you to ask the question.
The third question can only be answered in hope. The answer, of course, will come year by year as long as we live on earth, and then, as a final answer, when our journey here on earth will be over. Whenever we ask the third question its answer is related to and depends upon the answers to the first two questions. What we experience as God's word to us in the past, and what we experience as God's word in the present is the foundation and basis for what we hope will be God's word to us in the future and for eternity.
Years ago when I attended a retreat for priests in Louisville, Kentucky I heard Archbishop Sheen say he hoped that when he first met Jesus on the other side of death Jesus might say to him you remind me of my mother. That hope was based upon Archbishop Sheen's great love for and closeness to Mary in his everyday life on earth. A boy of eleven or twelve, based on his value system, might hope God will say we have plenty of Nintendo games here in Heaven.
Any Catholic should live in such a way that he or she can confidently hope God will say at the final judgment, come, blessed one, take possession of the share in my Kingdom prepared for you by Jesus from the foundation of the world. (Jn. 13: 3). These words are attractive and clear enough, but it can be a challenge to keep ourselves aware of them, give them power over our lives, and permit them to be the rock upon which our hope for eternal blessing and happiness rests.
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A Lenten smile for you:
After the church service one Sunday a little boy said to the Pastor: : " When I grow up I am going to give you some money". "Well, Thank you, but why me?" "Because my Daddy says you are one of the poorest preachers we have ever had".
I have heard that patriotic people pay their taxes with a smile. Then I tried it but they wanted cash,