Being a Practicing Catholic can at times make for a tough life but rest assured, it always provides for a peaceful death
Jesus said to his disciples: “Stay awake! For you do not know on which day your Lord will come. Be sure of this: if the master of the house had known the hour of night when the thief was coming, he would have stayed awake and not let his house be broken into. So too, you also must be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.
“Who, then, is the faithful and prudent servant, whom the master has put in charge of his household to distribute to them their food at the proper time? Blessed is that servant whom his master on his arrival finds doing so. Amen, I say to you, he will put him in charge of all his property. But if that wicked servant says to himself, ‘My master is long delayed,’ and begins to beat his fellow servants, and eat and drink with drunkards, the servant’s master will come on an unexpected day and at an unknown hour and will punish him severely and assign him a place with the hypocrites, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.”
You do not know on which day your Lord will come. We don’t know the day or the hour. We have to be prepared and be vigilant. Stay awake! On September 11th 2001, many men and women got up on that faithful Tuesday morning for just “another day of work”. Many people from Westchester , Connecticut, and Upper Bergen County got into their black cars and were driven downtown. Little did they know that within the hour, they would be standing in front of God - face to face! Are we any different then they were, on that day, that will live in infamy?
My aunt died a few weeks ago, unexpectedly. She had been sort of sick, but was being treated. She was in the hospital a few days before she died, but the day before she was much better. The doctors had said she was stronger and breathing better, and they thought she was on the road to recovery. Then that night she took a turn for the worse and died the next day. We didn’t know it would be that day, that hour. But even as we hoped for the best, we prepared for the worst, I guess.
In an episode of the Simpsons, Bart says he plans to live a debauched life and then go for a deathbed conversion. I guess that works if you know when you’re going to die, but since you don’t always know the day or the hour, that plan can backfire. Luckily, my aunt did not really have to worry about that either. She had spent her whole life devoted to family, giving to charity, helping anyone who needed help. My aunt and uncle were always ‘bringing home strays.’ My aunt was always feeding neighbor kids. My uncle always stopped to help when someone was stranded at the side of the road.
Jesus says to be ready at any time. When the boss is away, the employees will goof off. But if the boss comes back early, the employees who are doing their work will be rewarded, and those who are partying will be “let go”. We need to be ready at any time. We don’t know when our time is up and we can’t always count on having time to make things right.