We are warned to avoid three things in our Gospel today. Jesus implores us to avoid these things so that that day doesn’t catch us by surprise.
That day? What day? The ultimate day in your life when you face God and the scroll is unrolled and your life here on earth meets it final judgement. Oh, that day.
Jesus warns us to be “vigilant at all times
and pray that you have the strength
to escape the tribulations that are imminent
and to stand before the Son of Man.“
Three things He warns us of today…
- Don’t allow your heart to become drowsy from carousing.
- Don’t allow your heart to become drowsy from drunkenness.
- Don’ allow your heart to become drowsy from the anxieties of daily life.
I think I have the first two under control. The temptations for carousing and drunkenness still exist because my heart still beats, but I have disciplined myself to avoid those “near occasions of sin”. Again, it is a daily struggle but I’ve tried to align myself with who I consider to be the greatest “man mentor” to follow. I pray often for St. Joseph to intercede for me. St. Joseph was a man who sacrificed so much for his wife and “God-son”. Not much is written about Joseph, but I believe in my heart that his dedication to Mary, Jesus, God and Holy Ghost is one that I want to mirror in my life. So with his aid and inspiration, I hope to always keep the avoidance of carousing and drunkenness under control.
It is the third one that I must truly learn to conquer. How does one not help but get caught up in the anxieties of daily life? It surrounds me on all sides. Work and profit margins; family needs and family bills, and car insurance and maintaining the house and politics and religion and…see even now my heart rate is rising from just typing out this blog. Which calls to light other anxieties – weight, diabetes, cholesterol, rest…I think you can begin to see my point.
So how is it that I can keep from having this third warning consume me? I went back to the beginning of Luke’s 21st chapter this morning and read this…
When he looked up he saw some wealthy people putting their offerings into the treasury and he noticed a poor widow putting in two small coins. He said, “I tell you truly, this poor widow put in more than all the rest; for those others have all made offerings from their surplus wealth, but she, from her poverty, has offered her whole livelihood.
This passage calls us to our total dependance on God and God alone. This year in my daily prayers I have prayed for my total dependance on the will of God to rule my life – not my will, but His be done. I repeat that prayer every morning now. It is my hope in doing this that I learn to completely trust in God – to give him “my two small coins” knowing that in doing so, He will protect me and always provide for me. I believe this is what I must do in order to avoid the drowsiness of the anxieties of life that Jesus warns us about this morning.
Do something great for our Lord today – give yourself completely over to do His will. Today is the day to avoid the drowsiness of carousing, drunkenness and anxiety. Today is going to be a great day.
God’s will, not mine, be done.
Be not afraid; just have faith.
Jesus, I trust in You.
He must increase; I must decrease.
Lord, if You wish, You can make me clean.
But you man of God chose righteousness, devotion, faith, love, patience and gentleness. Compete well for the faith.