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It is only too easy to avoid doing God's Will. There are some Christians who neglect the Fourth Commandment about honouring father and mother. It's as if a woman complains that if granny comes to live with them, they won't be able to continue with their dinner parties - and the children will grumble about having to behave at meals.
The key to happiness within the Catholic Church, and joy in Eternity, consists of obedience to the Commandments and to legitimate discipline, and humble agreement with every matter of faith and morals - rather than doing what so many Catholics do, as they spend their lives complaining and arguing, and do not allow God to make them joyful.
It's as if the Holy Souls are invited to wait, on a ledge, able to see the Abyss from which God has saved them. They cannot yet enter Heaven. Some people need a lengthy purification because, when on earth, they made compromises with the world which were scandalous or shameful, in the sight of God, Who sees everything. When our attempts to 'fit in' lead us to scorn or disobey God's Commandments, we shall have a prolonged Purgatory to endure, to be made worthy of Heaven, even when we have confessed our sins before we die.
Christ was willing to end his prayer, when people were in need. As we follow the rocky path to Heaven as disciples of Christ, we have two great Commandments to keep: to love God with all our being, and to love our neighbour for God's sake, with the love of Christ's Spirit within us. That is why we must offer practical love to those in need, not in showy gestures, but in the course of everyday life, and determined to be as kind as Christ.
Our spiritual lives should be balanced, as we follow Christ. There are people who love to be busy with works of practical charity, yet who sit in judgement on people who show devotion to Christ and His Mother, and label them as 'Holy Joes'. The First Commandment is to love God, so a busy person who is kind but does not pray is failing in love; however, every prayerful person should desire, out of love for God, to keep the Second Commandment, and to love his neighbour. It is wrong to neglect prayer, or works of charity.
Christ wants us to avoid the ultimate disaster. Christ leads us by love, encouraging us to follow the Way to Heaven, helped by His guidelines and graces; but those who persist in disobedience and foolishness, ignoring His Commandments and decrees, or neglecting prayer, or corrupting others, or being irreverent towards His Sacred Ministers, or persisting, without repentance, in any grave sin, are allowed to follow their own paths. Alas, these lead to the great sewer which carries souls to Hell.
People know that kindness is important, but many forget that chastity is essential, in a life of true friendship with Christ, and preparation for Heaven. Those who mock people leading chaste lives and avoiding immoral entertainments also mock past ages in the Church for the care taken on this matter; but it is better to be disciplined and resemble a cared-for garden than ignore the Commandments and have a soul that resembles a jungle.
There are clear signs at a roundabout; so, as soon as people take the wrong road at a roundabout and realise it, they are wise if they turn back to the roundabout rather than blunder about in the woods, and risk being lost; and so it is in the Christian Life. Anyone who loses his way should not blunder around, or ask advice of people who, also, are lost, but go back to the 'signs', which are the Commandments, and the Precepts of the Church.
People who ignore road-signs about sharp bends, or speeding, are liable to crash when they suddenly arrive at a dip in the road, or roadworks. Just as they would be unlikely to finish their journey, so, people who ignore God's warnings about keeping the Commandments are unlikely to reach Heaven, unless they repent.
The Lord sees all the injustice on the earth, including the refusal to allow women to step outside their homes, the unjust imprisonment of those who campaign for free speech, and the cruel persecution of Christians, and the destruction of their churches. The world would be a better place if everyone kept the Ten Commandments.
We should pray for people without faith. People who don't love God or keep the Commandments are as if floating along on the great river of life, mostly unconcerned about the future, but likely to be carried as if over a great waterfall to disaster, when they die, unless they seek help from Heaven. They cannot save themselves by mere will-power, or good works alone.
If we treat our fellow-creatures with contempt or hard-heartedness, we cannot draw down graces from Heaven by our special devotions to Our Blessed Lady, no matter what efforts we put into our devotions. We cannot please Our Mother whilst blithely disobeying the advice, and the Commandments, of her beloved Son.
There is more to voting that supporting an attractive person. Policies matter. The Lord invites us to reflect on this matter, as we try to decide whom to vote for, in elections for Government: Are these people, or those, the more likely to encourage in our country the sort of life and behaviour that pleases God? Do politicians who support family life also desire to help the weak and needy? Do politicians seeking power want to promote further abortion provision, and contraceptive provision to children, whilst not favouring marriage? We need to support those who do good.
Christ looks on with gladness when we keep His Commandments, out of love for Him; but it is a cause for sadness, in His sight, that many Catholics praise people who are fervent in obeying the second Great Commandment about love for neighbour, but are scornful about people who are fervent about the First Great Commandment, and who are concerned for the honour of God, the dignity of Catholic worship, and the faithful handing-on of revealed Truth. Those are even called fundamentalists!
We might even risk our salvation if, on Sundays or holy days, we choose to miss Mass, in order to amuse ourselves, or for trivial reasons. Unless we are caring for the sick, for example, or are ourselves sick or without transport, it is to refuse to obey the First Commandment and the Church's command. It is to act as if we have no need of the graces that Christ offers, and no need of His prayer that we achieve Salvation.
We need to remember the Commandments: above all, about loving God, but also about loving our neighbour. Some people imagine it is no great wrong, to steal private property, but it can be as bad as physically assaulting the innocent, since it causes emotional damage and leaves people very afraid, even for years. Every thief should think about his likelihood of being saved.
What is Mary Like? by Elizabeth Wang
This text is the complete version of the pamphlet WHAT IS MARY LIKE? “Now having met together; they asked him, ‘Lord, has the time come? Are you going to restore the kingdom to Israel?’ He replied, ‘...
The Purpose of the Priesthood, by Elizabeth Wang
‘The Purpose of the Priesthood contains encouragement and advice for Catholic priests. It reminds them about the central meaning of the Priesthood, and about the need to teach the Catholic Faith in it...
How to Pray: Perseverance, by Elizabeth Wang
This text is published as Chapter 3 of How to Pray (Part One: Foundations), pages 19-30, entitled 'How to Persevere'. An introduction to the life of prayer with much practical advice about how to deep...
Autobiography of Elizabeth Wang, Part 1
This text forms part of Elizabeth Wang's Falling in Love: A Spiritual Autobiography (1999). It tells the story of her life and of her spiritual journey as she came to know Christ and His Church. You ...
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