Jesus said, “All that you see here - the day will come when there will not be left a stone upon another stone.” Will you and I be ready to face that day when it comes?
On November 20th we will celebrate the feast of Christ the King. It is the last Sunday in the Liturgical calendar and it marks the end of the Church year. The Church has been preparing us for this for weeks with readings and gospels that speak about the last days, the end of time as we know it.
We can look at this Sunday’s gospel as a prophecy about the end of the world. We can see it as foretelling a cataclysmic moment in human history where the righteous will be swept up into heaven, and the not-so-righteous swallowed up into hell. Or, we can see it as a wake up call, a reminder that through our Baptism each of us has been hired by Jesus to be a construction worker, a builder, of the Kingdom of God - and time is running out.
No one knows how and when the world will end. What we do know is that time, our own unique individual time, will come to an end some day. The end of the world will happen for each of us the moment we cross the threshold from life into death. And when our end time does come, we will be asked to account for what we did with the precious time we were given.
I believe that when we die each one of us will sit alone with God in a little room and watch the video of our life. And in that video we will see where we loved and where we failed to love. And sitting there next to God, the source of all goodness and love, we will judge ourselves on how much we loved - really loved; how much we forgave - really forgave; how much we helped others to find goodness and healing and wholeness in their own individual lives, their own unique circumstances.
The Church, in preparing us for the end of the year with these readings, is helping us call to mind our own mortality, our own inevitable end time. None of us knows how much time we have left. As we open our eyes each morning, God gives us 1,440 brand new minutes to use. We can use them with love to heal our world and cherish our relationships or we can waste them with bitterness and anger.
The great thing about the end of the Church year and the reminder about the end times, is that we still do have time - time to love, time to forgive, time to come outside of ourselves and be present to others. We have this gift of time to fix whatever is still broken in our lives; to heal any damaged relationships; to make ourselves whole.
Like Jesus says in this Sunday's gospel, “All that you see here - the day will come when there will not be left a stone upon another stone." We don't know when the end of the world will come but we do know that it will come for each of us. And when that day does come, all that will remain for eternity is the love we gave while we still had time.
Readers of this blog might enjoy these books by Deacon Lex. Both are available on Amazon.com:
Just to Follow My Friend: Experiencing God’s Presence in Everyday Life
The Gospel of You, The Gospel of Me: Making Christ Present in Everyday Life
Synchronicity as the Work of the Holy Spirit: Jungian Insights for Spiritual Direction and Pastoral Ministry