PURPOSES OF OUR LIVING

Seed in Hand

Purposes of Our Christian Living

What is your reason for living?  Early this week, I watched this animated movie entitled, “MEGAMIND.”  Unlike some of the animated films I’ve watched, this movie has a very interesting turn.  The hero METROMAN died (or faked his death at least) leaving the villain with no enemy to fight with.  Then it dawned on him, that he became like a “yin” without a “yang” or to use Biblical characters, “A Cain without an Abel.”  Hence, he lost his reason to live, his purpose being a villain – a cause for chaos.

Today’s Gospel reminds us of our purpose - the very reason for our living.  The end of time has been highlighted in all of our readings this Sunday either explicitly or implicitly.  Indeed, the end of time could be a cause for fear.  But for Christians, God calls us not to be afraid but to go back to our purpose … to our identity!

First, Jesus asks his disciples not to be deceived by those who claim knowledge of the end of time.  In short, He reminds them to cling to what is true!  One of the purposes for living is, therefore, to search for the truth.  I’ve pointed out in my previous homilies what the truth stands. It MUST always conform to what the Bible says.  Many people rely on “truths” that are subjective or relative as to whatone may believe to be true. “Truths” that are, in a sense, “bendable” and not “absolute.”  Truths that are promoted by “false prophets of doom.”

When my hometown was devastated by a calamity two years back, people thought that God was angry or that it was a sign that the world was about to end.  Truth is, the calamity was, yes, a natural phenomenon, but the great flood killing hundreds of people was not purely natural as a cause.  Upon careful investigation of the events that took place, they discovered that it was caused by sheer negligence on the part of the government. Illegal logging and corruption made it impossible for our hometown to protect itself from that calamity.  My fellow Aklanons had forgotten the truth about what it means to be a steward of creation, a basic Christian task highlighted in both Scripture and Tradition.

Second, one’s purpose as Christ’s disciples is to be a witness in the midst of hate, betrayals and persecution.  In other words, as we follow Him, we too, should follow Him in His Paschal Mystery.  Last week, I’ve shared to you the meaning of the resurrection of Christ.  The resurrection is a central point of our faith, but as Christians, we do not only live by Christ’s resurrection but by His passion and death too – the paschal mystery.  Some people just don’t get it.  They identify happy and glorious moments as their “Divine moments” where they believe God is present in their lives. But when unhappy and trying moments take place they seem to distance a loving God in the midst of it.  Our own sufferings may be hard to bear, but Christ suffered too.  In fact, before His glorious resurrection, was a painful and dreadful crucifixion.  Christ therefore reminds his disciples, as he reminds all of us today, that when we suffer, we do not suffer on our own but principally share in the very suffering of our Savior.

Finally, one’s purpose is to win everlasting life.  A great bulk of the Season of Ordinary Time gave emphasis on discipleship.  In line with this theme, Christ constantly reminds His disciples to be able to enter through the narrow gate, the gate that though narrow, will lead us to eternal LIFE!  Question is: “How much of our daily striving to win is for that life eternal?  Like I said last week as I’ve quoted the very words of my former Rector who just left the priesthood, it doesn’t matter what state of life you choose, what matters is HOW YOU LIVE YOUR LIFE! How you PASS THROUGH THAT NARROW DOOR! If our present lives reaffirm the GOODNESS of God which was denied by our first parents, then we are assured of entrance into that everlasting LIGHT in Heaven at the end of time!

MEGAMIND in the movie was a villain who later on turned into a hero not because he was forced to but because he realized his true calling and identity. In the absence of Good, he realized his inner goodness, the little goodness that he thought he never had. 

So what is your purpose?  As we are about to start a new liturgical year, God calls us to go back and ask ourselves of our purpose … our reason for living specifically our reason for CHRISTIAN LIVING.  Unless we’re able to figure that out, we wouldn’t be able to fully understand the seasons that are about to unfold.  Let us all prepare ourselves for the end of time not in fear but in watchfulness and preparation!

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