The first reading today from Revelations talks again about Heaven, and how special it is, once again portraying how it is really beyond anything we can imagine! And Jesus lets us know that these words are true, and “’Behold, I am coming soon.’ Blessed is the one who keeps the prophetic message of this book.”
He shows us through John what our destination is, and what our eternal life can be, only if we trust in Him. And though todays Gospel is extremely short, it is packed full of great advice from Christ on how we get to Heaven.
Jesus said to his disciples:
“Beware that your hearts do not become drowsy from carousing and drunkenness and the anxieties of daily life, and that day catch you by surprise like a trap. For that day will assault everyone who lives on the face of the earth. 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.”
So short, but yet, such powerful words to live by. Jesus talks about not letting our hearts be preoccupied by the pleasures and troubles in today’s world, and that our hearts need to be prepared for the day we are called to leave this world.
Where is your heart? What is the priority of your heart? There are so many great enjoyments in life, and God never intended for us to never have any fun or pleasures while on the earth. He wants us to be happy, but God also knows that we will be happiest when we are in Heaven with Him. We have to keep things in perspective and never lose sight that everything is because of God and that He should be first and foremost in our lives, and our hearts should be with Jesus, before anything or anyone else.
And on the other side of the spectrum, we are constantly assaulted with stress, trials and problems throughout our lives, and often times, we get so consumed by these negative things in our life and lose sight of God, and His plan. Again, we lose perspective of where our heart should be during these times when it is hurting the most, and we forget that God has a plan and purpose for all that we endure, we just need to “Be vigilant at all times and pray that you have the strength…” as Christ says.
Again, where is your heart? It’s ironic that I actually write this on “Black Friday” here in the United States, a traditional day of shopping the day after Thanksgiving where millions of people get up early (or even go out late on Thanksgiving Day now) to start their Christmas shopping in search of the latest deals and sales. People spend hours in line waiting to get into the stores to make a mad rush into the stores to get a deal on the latest gadgets, toys and other merchandise. While there is no harm in trying to get a deal when shopping and getting special gifts for your loved ones, you have to keep things in perspective and ask yourself, when is enough, enough? Is my quest to get a good deal on material things taking priority above things that are really more important?
We have to constantly ask, where is my heart today? It’s OK to enjoy nice things, and want to buy nice things for those special to us, and its great to be able to get together with friends and have a fun night out over a nice meal or drinks, and its great that we each have our passions and hobbies that we are drawn to. God wants us to be passionate about the things we do, so long as we keep things in perspective, and realize that none of it is possible without Him, and we cannot let these things take over our lives. He keeps us centered on all that is good, and He keeps us from not getting to high when things are going good, and He keeps us from getting too low when things are a little tough.
We must realize it can all be taken away in an instant. And then what? We are left with our soul, our heart. And we will then be asked that question a final time – Where is your heart? As we move into this season of Advent, perhaps we should all reflect on this question and the meaning of why Christ came to us, and really seek out where our heart truly is.