Thoughts on Eternity

Heaven is real.


…is also real.

And, Our Lady of Fatima provides us with warning…

…and encouragement.

The above quote was taken from my article over at Catholic Sistas this month, exploring some of the warnings and encouragement we find from the apparitions of Our Lady of Fatima

Today marks the 100th Anniversary of the final apparition of Our Lady of Fatima, and is the day known throughout Catholic circles as “the day the sun danced.” Therefore, I wanted to delve a little deeper into part of my message for Catholic Sistas.

I want to go a little deeper, and perhaps, a little more sober in contemplation.

Our Lady of Fatima is credited with warning the three shepherd children at Fatima, “If men only knew what awaits them in eternity, they would do everything in their power to change their lives.”

For centuries, we have heard “the end is near,” and society continues to fall further into immorality and chaos. We have seen the birth of two world wars, and every day, it seems as though we are waiting for news of the third world war breaking out. Our Lady of Fatima was also credited with warning the final battle will be between marriage and family – meaning, our families and marriages will be threatened by Satan himself.

And, yet, all around us, we see our neighbors (and, sometimes ourselves) not heeding Our Lady’s warnings.

And, perhaps, for many of us, we have a tendency to begin to judge – not ourselves, and not our own actions, but others. Which leads to an altogether separate sin.

The Coat of Arms for Pope Saint John XXIII expresses the belief we should,

See everything, 

Overlook a great deal;

Correct a little.

See everything;Overlook a great deal;Correct a little.

As I contemplated today’s final apparition, the messages of Fatima, and our focus needing to be on eternity rather than the “here and now,” I began to realize we, as individuals, have the most important role we can play in our salvation.

We have the choice to choose to believe.

We have the choice to follow the Truths set forth by God.

And, as Our Lady warns, if we truly understood eternity and all that goes into it, we would want to do everything in our power to change our current lives.

We would want to change – beginning with changing ourselves.

As I wrote in my post for Catholic Sistas, Heaven is real – and, Hell is also real.

We are all at risk for choosing the wrong path. Every day, we are given choices, and based on those choices, we are choosing which path we will follow.

Jesus was tortured, died, and Resurrected for our sins, but His sacrifice on the Cross at Calvary doesn’t come without expectation of us today. He doesn’t ask us to simply believe He died to save us; He expects us to do something about it.

He expects us to live a life worthy of His sacrifice on the Cross.

He expects us to live a life where we focus on deepening a relationship with Him.

He expects us to act as Christ to others – in all of our thoughts, words, and deeds.

And, while He has unfathomable mercy, love, and forgiveness for us, He asks us to put our money where our mouths are, and to truly be transformed by His Ultimate Sacrifice.

Every day, I fall short of His expectations. Yet, every day, I wake up with a renewed sense of determination – to do better than the day before.

Today’s 100th anniversary serves as a reminder to all of us – stop looking around and judging each other, and instead, turn inward.

Begin to judge yourself – take account of where we may individually be lacking, and take the corrective steps toward redemption.

Be worthy of Christ’s sacrifice. 

God alone knows our hearts, sometimes better than ourselves. Turn to Him and let Him into your heart – let Him see all of you, naked and bare.

And, because it is the only thing with which we should truly concern ourselves, turn your eyes toward eternity.

Start living your life as though eternity matters.

Because it does.

Hal Moore Quote

11 thoughts on “Thoughts on Eternity

  1. Agreed.

    I think I’ll live forever. Whether that’s good new or bad news depends in part on what decisions I make. “No pressure.” 😉

    On the other hand, I don’t take America’s traditional ‘fire and brimstone’ approach to faith. Certainly not when I’m dealing with folks who may assume that religion is a psychiatric disorder, or that sin is a propaganda tool to keep folks in line – – – or a marketing gimmick to get money. I could easily have been one of ‘those people.’

    I’ve read J. Edwards’ “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God,” and hope that he meant well. Blaming him for the ‘God hates you’ brand of faith isn’t, I think, reasonable.

    On the other hand, we’re dealing with a society where ‘God has anger management issues’ assumptions finally started looking unreasonable to many folks.

    I’m not surprised that quite a few Americans seem to have trouble imagining that sin is making irrational and destructive decisions; acting in a way that does not reflect love of God, man, and neighbor.

    My attitude is colored by early exposure to folks – not in my parent’s circle, happily – who unintentionally encouraged me to take a very long, hard, look at faith and religion in general. I eventually became a Catholic. Some apparently made other choices.

    1. I love how we have both been influenced by those around us to take a very long, hard look at faith and religion. I think when we take some time to step back and truly examine (and educate ourselves) on faith (small f), Faith (large F), and religion, we come away understanding more of God’s will – and His desires.

      I credit my non-Catholic husband with enhancing my Faith, as odd as that may sound. Because he challenges me (in a good way) to educate myself on why the Church teaches what she teaches!

  2. Lovely.. It reminds me of something the poet Rilke wrote about being awake and alive as “deeds not states of being” that must be chosen anew each moment.

    Thanks for making the centennial a little more beautiful for me!

    1. Thank you so much for the kind words! I am happy (and, humbled) to hear this piece resonated with someone else, aside from myself! I will have to look up the poem you referenced – sounds like I would agree with the author’s assertion.

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