Have much more concern for your own death than the end of the world December 1, 2015Posted by Tantumblogo in awesomeness, Basics, catachesis, Four Last Things, General Catholic, Grace, Liturgical Year, reading, religious, Saints, sanctity, Tradition, Virtue.
A helpful reminder from Dom Prosper Gueranger, along with a quote from St. Teresa of Jesus on her lament for her own unworthiness and coldness of faith (which, coming from a Doctor of the Church, ought to cause us some serious reflection!). There is a tendency among pious souls to sometimes have great concern over indicators of a perceived approach of the end of the world. Far more likely is our own decease and personal judgment before that happens! So worry far more about that, than signs and portents.
From the Second Monday after Advent, The Liturgical Year Vol. 1:
Say not that the end of the world is not yet come, and that the destinies of the human race are not filled up; it is not the world that is here in question, it is you individually. True the day of the Lord will be terrible, when this world shall be broken up as a vessel of clay, and the remnants of creation shall be a prey to devouring flames; but, long before that day of universal terror, your own day of judgment will come. The inexorable Judge will come to you, you will stand before His face, you will have none to defend you, and the sentence He will pass will be eternal; and though the nature of that sentence, whether for our against you, will not be known to the rest of the world until the last and general judgment, still is this His coming to you, at your own judgment, terrible above measure. Remember, therefore, that what will make the terror of the last day so great is, that then will be solemnly and publicly confirmed what was judged irrevocably, though secretly, between your own soul and her Judge; just as the favorable sentence, which the good receive at the happy moment of their death, will be repeated before the immense assembly of men and angels on the last day. Is it wise, then, Christians, to put off your conversion, on the plea of the day of the Lord not having to come for ages, when it might be this night that your soul were required of you? The Lord is coming; lose no time; prepare to meet Him; a humble and contrite and converted heart is sure to find acceptance.
Now, a quote from St. Teresa of Avila:
It grieves me, my God, that I should be so wicked and that I am able to do so little in Your service. I well know that it is my own fault that You have not granted me the favors which You gave to those who went before me………I grieve over my life, Lord, when I compare it with theirs; and I cannot say this without weeping. When I meditate, my God, upon the glory which You have prepared for those persevere in doing Your will, and when I think how many trials and pains it cost Your Son to gain it all for us, and how little we have deserved it, and how bound we are not to be ungrateful for this wondrous love which has taught us love at such a cost to itself, my soul becomes greatly afflicted. How is it possible, Lord, that all this should be forgotten, and that, when they offend You, mortal me should be so forgetful of You? O my Redeemer, how forgetful are men! They are forgetful even of themselves. And how great is Your goodness, that You should remember us when we have fallen and have tried to strike You a mortal blow, and that You forget what we have done and give us Your hand again and awaken us from our incurable madness so that we seek and beg You for salvation. Blessed be such a Lord, blessed be such great mercy and praised be He forever for His merciful pity! O my soul, bless forever so great a God! how can a soul turn against Him?
I just found those little bits helpful, personally, so I thought I would
inflict them on share them with you.
I find the imagery of trying to strike a mortal blow at God quite moving. Is that not what is behind some of my sins?
It is a bit amazing seeing this Doctor of the Church lament her own lack of sanctity and paucity of service to the Lord! Goodness! What does that make me, who haven’t done even a fraction of what this great Saint did?
Something to ponder on.