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Far 'below' Heaven and earth is a state of near-darkness where rebellious and unrepentant souls find themselves - through their own choices - quite without joy, hope or beauty.
A person in turmoil is wise if he turns to the Father in Heaven, and believes in his love. If he prays, he will be led to the right Way; and if he follows it, though it takes him through dark times, he will be moving towards the light of Heaven with a new hope in his heart.
Those involved in serious sin, such as those who promote abortion, unless they repent, will one day find themselves falling into hell.
God never ceases to pour out His love and forgiveness towards us all; yet a person who hides behind His sins, by refusing to let go of them, stops that divine love and forgiveness reaching Him. His darkness and sadness are self-chosen; yet by repentance, he exchanges his filthy rags for a clean white garment, and his sins are banished.
It is as if, far above the earth, the Godhead holds at its heart an oasis of light. This is the city of God, home of the Saints and Angels for Eternity; and it is foolishness, in the Lord's sight, to risk losing an Eternity of bliss, there, for a moment's earthly pleasure or gain followed by Eternal pain and darkness.
As the Son of God looked down from Heaven towards the filth and darkness which He would enter, far below, when He came into our sinful world, He saw the Blessed Virgin Mary, who had been prepared, at her consent, as a safe place for Him who is all purity and goodness. She was like an 'ark', to hold and protect Him for a while.
Whoever trusts in God and in the merits of Jesus His Son, and prays with faith that he will be helped, is indeed helped, even in the deepest pit of sinfulness, despair and self-disgust. He can even be led into an intimate friendship with his Creator, when he has been drawn up from darkness.
Even someone as selfless and Christ-centered as Mother Teresa had to undergo - for her soul's sake - a long period in interior darkness. God provided her with this spiritual purification to make her perfect, as her order expanded and she experienced outward success and adulation as well as opposition.
A person who is determined to make preparation, to be worthy to receive the gift of contemplation, is like a man willing to go to the station, and travel on a train through dark tunnels, in order to reach the heights of the Himalayas. Someone who will not get out of bed to pray is like a man who wants to travel on high, but who sits waiting for a sedan chair to be sent down to fetch him. It will not come.
Christ showed me Hell, where poor sinners go, at death, if they have refused to love Him, refused to take the safe road to Heaven. By their own choice they shut themselves away from Him, and endure the torment of regret, the darkness and flames of Hell, and loss of hope, forever.
A person's life can be seen as balanced if he believes all the truths of the Catholic Faith and tries to practice them; yet if he jettisons too much of the truth, he endangers his own soul, and might even fall away into the darkness. The boxes, here on the scales, represent our doctrines.
People who are trapped in a particular sin or sinful way of life are as if walking through a great fog, unable to see their steps clearly. When we help them by our prayers and sacrifices, we help to clear away the fog, and enable some to see the Abyss into which they might have fallen, had they continued in their sins.
For as long as life on earth endures there will always be demons gibbering in the darkness, trying to drag souls into sin. Whoever calls out to the Immaculate Virgin Mother of God, Mary, and asks for her prayers, will receive grace from God and be drawn towards the light of Heaven.
We are right to pray for people in need: for the poor, the sick, those in prison or held hostage, and many more; but there are people in need of prayer who are often well-fed and physically strong, but left in darkness by their atheism: their lack of belief in God. Large areas of the world are afflicted by this tragedy.
At the Last Judgement, the Angels and Saints who have joined in the praises of Catholics at Mass will gaze upon those Catholics who used to pray with them but who stopped attending. They will look on with pity, as those unhappy souls realise how dreadful has been their carelessness in God's service - or as some souls finally turn away from God, to enter darkness.
By some particular sins, many people put in place a dark blanket of cloud above them, which shuts out the light and grace of God from their lives; and those sins are an obsession with pornography and violence. There is an occasional gap in the clouds, made wherever good people make entertaining films and programmes that neither harm nor corrupt viewers.
A person who is content to serve God in faith and darkness, and to be obedient to His wishes in everyday life, persevering in prayer and acts of charity, is swiftly drawn by Him into contemplation - even experiencing, when God Wills, the type of prayer and union in which she leaves behind earthly things, to soar upwards into His heart.
God looks with horror upon abortion and related sins; it is as though a large fence separates the lives of those who do God's Will and obey His laws from those who deliberately choose to go against Him. Beyond the 'fence' lies darkness of soul and intellect and little hope of eternal joy.
The lives of those people on earth who live according to God's laws are lived 'in the light'. They inhabit the 'City of God' on earth, which has at its centre a church, for the worship of the Father through Christ, in the Spirit. The light of Heaven shines down upon those lives, but others live in darkness.
Around the City of God, where people live according to God's laws, is a place only dimly-lit, where people who sin hide from the light, like medieval outlaws staying outside the city. When people in darkness eventually die, they cannot rise up to Heaven to the God they have rejected but must fall into the Abyss.
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