Thirty-third Sunday in Ordinary Time
Well, the weeks have slowly passed us by. These many, many Sundays in what the Church calls “Ordinary Time” were intended to be a time of study, introspection and preparation for our ultimate destiny. Today’s Gospel from Mark refers to that when Jesus tells his apostles, “Get ready for the end. Learn to read the signs that things are changing. Don’t be surprised.”
There is a finalization in the relationship between the human family and Almighty God. The main one is the ultimate day which will bring about the end of the human story in the sense that we have known it since creation. The second is much more personal – our own ending. In the Gospel today, Jesus tells that no one knows the hour or the day where the big closing scene but that is true of us individually too. We don’t know exactly when we are going to be dying and that behooves us all the more to be ready for it.
Thinking about the end of life should not be a glum and sad thing. Oh, we don’t want to be separated from the people that we love and we would be very happy to have a death that comes over us gently and peacefully. But what comes after death is a direct and eternal encounter with our Creator, our infinitely loving God. We have come into existence because God wanted us to be here. We have been brought into existence because he wants us to share his life forever and ever. The God that we worship is a loving, infinitely kind and generous God. We should look towards that day without fear or trembling, but with a calm confidence of God’s understanding of our weaknesses. His love for us goes far beyond his concern for our frailties.
Onward to Judgment. Onward to eternity.