So there we have it!!
The conclusion to PILLAR 1: THE CREED
OH MY GOSH YOU GUYS!!
Paragraph 1051 says, “Every man receives his eternal recompense in his immortal soul…”
Death is the separation of body and soul
In that immediate moment we stand before our Lord and God
WE GET WHAT WE HAVE CHOSEN!!
A great spiritual practice for every single one of us would be to imagine our death on a regular basis
At least once a week
If not, then EVERY DAY
Not just the death of whoever we are on this earth
Imagine the moment after our death where we come before God face to face
What would God’s face look like?
As we stand before our Lord and He sees us and His gaze rests upon us and our gaze rests upon Him
Is that look upon His face one of PURE JOY?
Is that look upon His face one of absolute thankfulness, praise, joy, and good fatherly pride in the fact that we have done it?
That He can look at us with joy as we stand before Him in the moment after our death and look at us and say, “Well done, good and faithful servant! Come, enter into your Master’s joy!”
When we stand face to face with God, will he look at us and see us and know us as we are and love us so deeply
Will there be PAIN in His face?
Will there be SORROW on his Face?
As He looks at us and sees what we have chosen?
As we stand before God in His goodness, beauty, and love will He look at us and say, “Oh I know. That is what you have chosen. You have chosen NOT ME.”
Will we look upon Him and realize, “I have chosen not Him. I had an entire life to choose Him and I didn’t. I had an entire life to say YES to God, my Father, God my Savior, God the Holy Spirit who dwells in me through Baptism and Confirmation. Every time I pray and ask the Father for the Holy Spirit in Jesus’ name, He gives it. I had all of those chances. All of those chances to just simply say, ‘I’m sorry. Please, Father help me.’ And I didn’t.”
Will I look upon the Father’s face, look upon the face of our Judge, Jesus Christ the Son, who is the Judge of the living and the dead
His face will be sad, sorrowful, grieved
We will walk away NEVER to enter His presence EVER EVER AGAIN
NEVER to gaze upon goodness EVER AGAIN
NEVER to experience love EVER AGAIN
It is worth meditating on our death and that moment right after our death
WIll we stand before God and He breaks into a smile of JOY
Through all the weakness, pain, and suffering we will realize IT WAS ALL WORTH IT
Fr. Mike quotes St. Theresa of Avila here
Will we stand before the Lord and see that sorrow in His eyes and feel nothing but regret and resentment?
When we walk away we will never again see goodness
Let us pray that we have the grace of FINAL PERSEVERANCE
It is one of the things we pray for when we pray the HAIL MARY
HOLY MARY, MOTHER OF GOD, PRAY FOR US SINNERS NOW AND AT THE HOUR OF OUR DEATH
That grace of FINAL PERSEVERANCE is necessary for ALL OF US
It refers to this PARTICULAR and UNIQUE grace
It is part of God’s plan
In that moment of death being able to CHOOSE THE LORD
Fr. Mike is telling a story now about a parish priest…
Pray the Hail Mary 3 times a day
Pray for that grace in our lives
To be able to close our eyes and say AMEN
Paragraph 1062 says, “In Hebrew, amen comes from the same root as the word ‘believe.’ This root expresses solidity, trustworthiness, faithfulness. And so we can understand why ‘Amen’ may express both God’s faithfulness towards us and our trust in him.”
AMEN means BELIEVE
It MIRRORS the opening of the Creed when we say, “I BELIEVE…”
AMEN captures something SO MUCH DEEPER
When we say the word AMEN we’re really saying, “I STAKE MY LIFE ON THIS.”
It’s not just INTELLECTUALLY BELIEVE
MY WHOLE LIFE IS WRAPPED UP IN THIS
I STAKE MY LIFE ON THIS
Same thing when we receive the Eucharist
The priest raises the Body of Christ aloft and says, “The Body of Christ.”
We say AMEN
In such a deeper way it means “I STAKE MY LIFE ON THIS TRUTH! That you, God, are faithful. That you are the God of Truth. And that is TRULY YOU. You are TRULY PRESENT in the Eucharist. So when I say, ‘AMEN’, I realize that if you are not present in the Eucharist, then I am worshiping a piece of bread. I am worshiping something that does not deserve worship. And so literally, truly, I am committing the worst form of idolatry. So I am staking my life on this every time I come forward and receive Holy Communion.”
IT IS SO POWERFUL!!
IT IS A REAL THING!!
Amen DOES MEAN “I BELIEVE”
When it means MORE than simply I BELIEVE INTELLECTUALLY
St. Augustine says in Paragraph 1064, “May your Creed be for you as a mirror. Look at yourself in it, to see if you believe everything you say you believe. And rejoice in your faith each day.”
Let’s praise God before we conclude this pillar
Jesus Christ is THE AMEN
God is the God of Truth
The God of the Amen, Jesus Christ, is the definitive AMEN of the Father’s love for us and He takes up and completes OUR AMEN to the Father
So we give God praise
At the end of every day, every week, and at the end of our life we will see God face to face
We will see Him as He is
We will know ourselves as we are
We will know what we have chosen
We pray that God gives us the grace of FINAL PERSEVERANCE
Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death
Give us that grace of FINAL PERSEVERANCE
Let there be a priest at our bedside to give us the Anointing of the Sick, Reconciliation, and Viaticum
Fr. Mike is praying FOR YOU!!
Please pray for Fr. Mike and for each other!!
I cannot WAIT to see you tomorrow!!