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PAROUSIA


 

 

 

 

TAKE HEED

     The fearful sensible signs of the end times-- earthquakes, famine, wars, were meant to punish sinners.  To escape all these, Christ commanded us to be watchful and pray always. 

     Animals have instincts which they have received from God for the preservation of their own.  For our spiritual preservation, God gave us reason and prudence that we may flee sin as beasts flee dangers.

     Since the catastrophes of the end times are primarily meant for sinners, to spare ourselves from these we must first be watchful, "Take heed."  Know what is wholesome for your soul and what is obnoxious.  Take heed with the faculties of the soul:  this is what leads to virtue.  Watch all around you on all sides, keeping a watchful eye in guarding your soul  Take heed not on your things or the things around you but to yourselves.

      Do not mind the things around you:  riches, arts and the appendages of life.  Mind your soul; take special cared of it.  This admonition is good in healing the sick and perfecting the healthy.

     Do not spend time judging others but strictly your own.  Because we tend to judge others based on what we like and dislike.  Those we like are always right; the ones we dislike are always wrong. 

     If we do not take heed, our hearts will be overcharged with surfeiting, drunkenness and cares of this life.  The eyes of your mind will wax heavy.  For these remove prudence and cause the soul to suffer shipwreck.

     We must eat and drink to sustain our quest for God. . .but never in excess.  And the cares of this life, although they seem to have nothing unlawful, must be avoided because it does not conduce to religion.  

     The reason we must take heed is because "that day" will come unaware, at a time we do not expect.  It comes stealthily, like a trap.  It catches those who "sit", i.e. those who are not thinking or working for their salvation.  Christ wants us to be prompt and active in the way of good, not sitting and loitering on the ground but rising from it.  That day will not be a perilous day but a day of rejoicing. 

      Only they who take heed will not fall into indolence.  Only they who take heed will pray ardently.  Only they shall be found worthy to escape all those things that shall come to pass-- hunger, pestilence, wars, which for a time will threaten the elect but will only befall the sinner.

St. Thomas of Aquinas 

 

 

 

 

(08-30-10)

 

 

 

 

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                                                                                         - Teresa of Avila

 


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