If I asked a question today about what kind of journey this life is taking you on or where are you headed to, what kind of answers do you think I would get? I’m sure the answers would be very interesting depending on what life is throwing at people. So, regardless of where life is taking you or what you have been through in your own journey, our ultimate journey should be the journey to heaven, which is perfect eternal union with God that is the definition of heaven!
Our home is not Earth; we are here as pilgrims. Compare it to when you go on vacation to a different country, it is not your home, you’re just visiting there until you get back home. Our whole life is a journey to our final destination. The Lord promises us heaven if we walk in the path of righteousness, just as he promised Moses many times: Numbers 10:29 “And Moses said to Hobab the son of Reuel the Midianite, Moses’ father-in-law, “We are setting out for the place of which the Lord said, ‘I will give it to you” God created us in his likeness and image, so we have that desire in our heart to be with him forever. He wants no one to be separated from him unless one chooses to be separated from him and that’s what we call free will. According to Father Larry Richards, we have two choices: you could become saints or go to hell! That sounds harsh, but it’s true, the definition of becoming a saint is making it to heaven.
Jesus says it in his own words in John 14:2; “In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? 3 And when I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. This promise from Jesus gives us hope and, in this day and age, hope is all we have. We can be assured that there is more this to this life we are living, this life of false hope, false happiness. What does Jesus mean when he says “I go on prepare I’ll place for you?” Think about that for a minute. Back in first century Judaism the groom would leave the bride at her parents’ house until her home was ready to be moved in, he would usually add on to his father’s house or build a new house somewhere close. The house would be ready for the bride to move-in, Full of furniture, all her clothes and personal belongings. When the house was done, he would go and get her and bring her to the new home. Jesus does the same thing for us, he goes and prepares our home and when the time is ready, he comes back and brings us to a beautiful home that we will be in for all eternity.
So, prepare yourself because you never know when the groom is coming; you may have a long time to prepare yourself or a short time to prepare yourself like the thief on the cross did. Is this journey to heaven easy? No. Pray, hope, and don’t worry. Worry is useless. God is merciful and will hear your prayer…said St. Padre Pio.
But all this that we go through on this journey God gives us the graces to endure these, He is on this journey with us if we allow him to be. Saint Francis de Sales reminds us: “It is right that we should begin again every day. There is no better way to complete the spiritual life than to be ever beginning it over again.” The gift of a new day is the gift given to us by God and we should make use of it very well and prepare ourselves for eternal life. Live every day as if it were your last day. If you knew today would be your last day, how would you live this day differently, what would you do? How would you prepare yourself to see God whom nothing can be hidden from? If you ask yourself this question every day, it will give you something to meditate on and prepare yourself during this journey.
At the end of life, when the journey is over, when the curtains close, when the lights go out, when every last tear shall be wiped away and you come before our Lord and Savior and He will say one of two things to you: “34 Then the King will say to those at his right hand, ‘Come, O blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; 35 for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, 36 I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me. (Mat 25:31- 36) or he will say to you: “41 Then he will say to those at his left hand, ‘Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels; 42 for I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not clothe me, sick and in prison and you did not visit me. (Mat 25:41-43).
My brothers and sisters, the choice is yours!