GOD WANTS YOU IN HEAVEN
BUT MOST REJECT GOD'S SAVING MERCY AND CHOOSE SIN INSTEAD
Run to God!
We Greatly Need His Help!
Lacking TRUE Sorrow for ONE SIN... Rejects God's Gift of Eternal Life
Souls are Dying!
Even though God spends our entire life trying to save us and bounds of mercy is waiting for us, tragically, we are still dying.
We simply must learn the Way! We need a SAVING FAITH. We are rejecting God’s saving merciful grace from not having true sorrow for our sins!
“[Tragically,] there are few who wish to receive Him and to be saved by Him [most choose their sin instead], although His yoke is sweet and His burden light.”
–St. Francis of Assisi (Letter to All the Faithful).
Because our flesh is so weak from original sin, we couldn’t save ourselves through obedience to the Law. So God, from His great love for us, sent His Son to save us. (cf. Romans 8:3).
However, even though Christians have received Jesus’ most merciful free gift of saving, forgiving grace from His suffering, death and resurrection at our baptisms (cf. Acts 2:38), we reject that sanctifying (saving) grace when we lack true sorrow for any sin.
“Thy death will not save me, if I do not on my part detest every evil and have true sorrow for the sins I have committed against Thee.”
–St. Alphonsus, Doctor of the Church (Meditations for Every Day of Advent, Med. 11)
Salvation is by the Forgiveness of Our Sins
Salvation is only found in the forgiveness of our sins, since “all have sinned and are deprived of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). And if we aren’t sorry, truly sorry, for any sin, we reject Eternal Life to stay in that sin.
This forgiveness is first received by Christ’s sacrifice and it is kept in our souls by “godly grief [true sorrow, which] produces a repentance that leads to salvation and brings no regret, but worldly grief [false sorrow] produces death” (2 Corinthians 7:10), since it rejects God’s perfect forgiveness He gave us from lacking sorrow for offending God.
“I am afraid that, as the serpent deceived Eve by his cunning, your thoughts may be corrupted from a sincere [and pure] commitment to Christ” (2 Corinthians 11:3). We can see the devil’s deceptive tactics have won, as he has confused most of us to what a saving faith and true sorrow really is.
Many think if we feel really badly about a sin and “say” we are truly sorry, we are. But for most that just isn’t true.
Oh, “how few the Elect are” as St. Jerome, Doctor of the Church, warns us in his commentary on Matthew. The tragic reality is, we don’t need to have true sorrow for just some of our sins, but we must grow in faith to have it for ALL of them.
Tragically, so few have a saving faith which can accept God’s forgiving mercy because we lack a truly humble contrite heart for every sin ever committed. We have been deceived and aren’t seeking a saving faith.
Sure, we need to, “confess our sins, [then] he who is faithful and just will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:19). But this confession we must make can’t be lacking in true contrition: saying we are sorry with our words, but in our hearts we really aren’t. We need godly grief (true sorrow), and this godly grief we need, for most, takes much time to acquire because we desire sin very much.
Sadly, our confessions, if we make them, for most, are simply done in word alone. Our hearts aren’t truly sorry for our great offenses committed against God, because we aren’t doing what is necessary to change.
“Many, I tell you, will attempt to enter [Heaven] but will not be strong enough [for they lack a saving faith]” (Luke 13:23-24).
So we can begin to see our errors in thinking, so the devil won’t own us for all eternity, please ask ourselves, “How can we be truly sorry for sinning if we aren’t even working with all of our heart to stop?” What kind of sorrow is that?…I tell you, it isn’t true.
“We must be ready to suffer anything rather than fall back into those sins which we have just confessed. People should be able to see a complete change in us; otherwise we have not merited absolution (not been forgiven).
–St. John Vianney (Sermons of the Cure of Ars, Merit Absolution)
God who reads our hearts (cf. Luke 16:15), knows most of us simply don’t hate many of our offences against Him enough to be truly sorry for them especially since we aren’t continuously and correctly seeking His transforming grace, making resolutions and amending our ways.
Honestly, how many sins are we not even putting forth effort, never mind a true effort, into amending? Each one is deadly (cf. Acts 3:19).
My friend, unfortunately, very few grow in their sorrow, from just some sorrow into gaining a true godly grief–a true hatred–for every sin. We can clearly see this in our constant repeated sins, which results in most never coming to truly love God and unknowingly rejecting His forgiveness since we still have some liking for some horrid sin.
“For the gate is narrow and the road is hard that leads to life, and there are few who find it.” (Matthew 7:13-14).
Tragically,”very few Christians are saved” as St. Augustine, Doctor of the Church, tells us in St. Leonard of Port Maurice sermon on The Little Number of the Saved.
Such a great loss of life. An eternity in terrifying anguish awaits so many. We desperately need God’s mercy to give us a saving faith!
From not properly seeking God's grace, we die still having a liking for some sins (lacking sorrow) and choose sin over His love and lose Eternal Life.
Oh, many are part of the faith, but so few actually live it.
Believing in Christ is the Beginning of Faith–Not the End
To obtain a wonderful saving faith from God’s mercy that truly hates every sin (has true sorrow), we need to understand that this beautiful perfect forgiveness is only given to “everyone who believes in Him” (John 3:16).
But let’s not become deceived by the evil one, who wants to own us for all eternity, and not correctly seek God’s helping, healing mercy to save us (take away our liking for sin), because we think we “believe” in Christ and are forgiven.
We simply must come to know, we don’t have a saving faith–true belief–the instant we recognize Jesus as Lord. That is the beginning of faith…the infancy in faith…not proof of a saving faith. We need to “grow into salvation” (1 Peter 2:2), and for most that takes much time.
Please realize, even the devils “believe” Jesus is Lord, “I [the demon] know who you are—the Holy One of God!” (Luke 4:34). Surely, we need more faith than the devils, who are damned.
After our baptism, when we matured mentally and gained full knowledge of right from wrong and didn’t truly hate nor sincerely wish to stop our first sin, we lost (rejected) God’s magnificent gift of saving grace from lacking true sorrow for offending God–which is an abomination of love; it is a mortal sin!
From the consequences of original sin, sadly we desire sin–lack contrition–very greatly. Now for the rest of our life, we are supposed to seek God’s unfathomable mercy–follow Him, the Way–gain grace and grow into a mature saving faith, that has true sorrow for every sin (true love for God) so He can save us.
This is what our faith is truly supposed to be…having the goal of seeking God’s mercy (grace) so we can learn how to truly love Him and gain a saving faith so to live in Eternal Paradise.
“[Only] those who have grown to maturity [into a saving faith] in the grace of God will find the joy of adopted children in the kingdom of heaven; those who have not grown to maturity [haven’t reached a saving faith] will become God’s enemies and, even though they were once his children [from baptism], they will be punished according to their deeds for all eternity.”
–St. Andrew Kim Taegon (His Final Exhortation Letter).
Jesus only becomes Our Savior (cf. Luke 2:11) when we allow His helping mercy–His actual grace–to transform our hardened hearts of self-love, which still desires sin, into softened hearts of true love for God (cf. Ezekiel 36:26), which now truly hates all sin and all pleasures of the world (cf. 1 John 2:15) and desires God and His will alone so we can embrace God’s saving mercy He died to give us.
Truly, God doesn’t reject us; sadly we reject Him for sin. (cf. 1 Thessalonians 4:8)
It is true, “everyone shall be saved who calls on the name of the Lord” (Acts 2:21), but only if we call upon Him truly wanting Him and not any sin. Therefore, we need to learn how to run to God correctly, so we can open our hearts to receive His grace and come to truly love Him by gaining a true hatred for each and every sin.
Please understand, accepting the gift of eternal life isn’t hard, KEEPING IT is.
Wonderfully, God “is patient with you, not wishing that any should perish but that all should come to [true] repentance.” (2 Peter 3:3). Yet the horribly reality is, “many are called [to Heaven] but few are chosen” (Matthew 22:14)…But we can be with the “few” if we repent and change and then grow in wonderful joy as we “attain the goal of faith, the salvation of your souls” (1 Peter 1:1).
Reject One Word – Reject God
Because “the Word became Flesh” (John 1:14), God is the Word. They are one.
Therefore, if we reject any of the Word–don’t want to obey even one command—we reject God from still having a desire for sin.
This perfect observance of the Word that we must seek (cf. Matthew 5:48) can’t be done just for the sake of obeying either, thinking it is by obedience that we are saved. We are saved by faith, not obedience (cf. Galatians 3:11). We must have true faith in Christ–the Word–as the Way to Eternal Life (cf. John 14:6).
If we want to be saved, we must strive to perfectly obey the entire Word–the law of love–because we believe God is the Word and understand that by rejecting any of the Word we are rejecting God, whom we should be loving (obeying) with all of our heart. That is why we seek to perfectly obey, out of great LOVE FOR GOD.
“Whoever loves me will keep my word” (John 14:23).
“Whoever rejects me and does not accept my words has something to judge him: the word that I spoke, it will condemn him on the last day” (John 12:48).
We desire sin–lack concern with disobeying the Word–and reject God by:
- thinking any sin is not serious,
- ignoring any of the Word not wanting to obey,
- not truly seeking–with all of our heart–to stop any sin,
- desiring anything opposed to the Word,
- lacking sorrow in any way for any sin…
When we do any of the above, we don’t truly care if we are offending God and don’t truly love Him. We desire sin…not God.
The sad reality is, we reject God—“the truth” (John 17:17) and His most merciful saving grace for some wretched sin in so many ways. Oh, how many sins do we desire? Not sure…well I will show you more clearly in this article so we can gain at least some awareness of our great need to change.
We greatly need God’s mercy to take away our desire for sin. Now is the time to learn the Way! Eternity is forever!
“There is such a thing as deadly sin” (1 John 5:16-17) and rejecting God (desiring any sin/lacking sorrow)–in any way–is one of them. It’s a mortal sin.
We Need A Horror for Sin
We must have a horror for sin and only seek God’s will, not our own sinful desires (cf. 2 Thessalonians 1:5-10). If we only understood the gravity one small sin has against perfect Goodness we would be absolutely horrified. The consequences of sin against God, others and ourselves, is incredible. If we truly comprehended this, we would run from sin like the plague it really is.
- wounds Our Lord’s Sacred Heart of Love,
- caused His crucifixion,
- separates us from Him,
- rejects grace, weakening us, making it easier to commit additional sins,
- creates much blindness to the Way, and
- produces great suffering on Earth, in Purgatory, and in Hell for eternity for us and others.
Please understand when we reject God for sin, we don’t choose Purgatory either. We choose Hell. Purgatory is only for the saved who are truly sorry for their sins but still need to atone (pay the punishment/purify themselves) for their offences committed after baptism, if they didn’t “cover”–atone–for their sins while on earth through great love (cf. 1 Peter 4:8), so they can enter into Heaven since “nothing unclean will enter it” (cf. Revelation 21:27).
Being Attached to One Sin–or Anything at all…Forfeits Salvation
As we can see, we can’t love/desire both God and sin, we “will either hate the one and love the other” (Matthew 6:24). If we still desire–are attached–any sin, even ONE–because of the infinite injury one sin causes God–as I said, we are guilty of denying of the whole Law (God) because we reject God’s saving mercy for some dreaded worthless sin (cf. James 2:10).
But that isn’t all. If we are attached to anything at all, that is idolatry! Without a doubt we must “love the Lord our God” (Mark 12:30) above all and desire nothing but Him if we want to be saved by Him. To learn more please read “How to Let Go of The World and Live for Heaven.”
“If anyone is attached to any one thing…everything is…lost…He who follows what is lost, is lost himself; and what greater loss, what greater blindness, what greater calamity, can there be than making much of that which is nothing!”
–St. Teresa of Avila, Doctor of the Church (The Life of St. Teresa, Ch. 34, No. 20)
But the devil has stripped away our horror for sin. We don’t hate it; we love it. Sadly, we don’t see where our hearts are being pulled to the world–because of our vast attachments…all of the countless things our hearts long for that isn’t God and His will.
The evil one has us even thinking we don’t “love” sin. “Who would love/desire sin?” we say, but our lack of hatred for sin is shown in our actions–as we stay in our repeated sins from having some liking for that evil which causes us to reject God’s transforming grace by wanting that sin instead of loving Him and ultimately leads us into rejecting God’s saving mercy at the hour of our death for that sin.
Horribly, “the majority of men shall not see God” as St. Justin, Doctor of the Church, declares (First Apology, Ch. 21). We live deceived.
This is because the devil has caught us. Most aren’t even concerned with salvation. We walk around believing we are saved. If we are blessed to gain some fear of punishment, some poor misguided soul who thinks they are loving us (does’t want to see us in fear) will quickly steer us right away from God’s gift (servile fear-fear of punishment). “Servile fear is a gift of the Holy Ghost” –St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church, (Summa Theologica II q.19, art.6). Then, we will go back to living our blind, concern free, lukewarm lives all over again.
We are so deceived, we don’t even know what our faith really is nor possess “the gift of fear of the Lord [which] is definitely the basis [of the Holy Spirit]. It is the FEAR OF SIN.” (St. Pope John Paul II (Spiritual Diary, Sept. 23, 1976). To learn about the marvels of true fear of the Lord, and not the deceptions which have spread today, please read the article “fear of the Lord.”
“The souls in hell having been found at the moment of death with a will [desire] to sin [any sin], have with them an infinite degree of guilt; and the punishment they suffer, though less than they deserve [because of the infinite degree of guilt from one sin], is yet, so far as it exists, endless.”
–St. Catherine of Genoa, (Treatise on Purgatory, Ch. 4)
Please don’t allow the devil to convince us that we don’t desire sin. In this article, I will show several ways, we clearly do. The evil one wants to darken us to our misery (sinfulness) and the Way to Heaven, so we lack motivation to repent and change (cf. 1 Peter 1:13-16). But we most certainly need to if we want to Live.
“Repent [become truly sorry], therefore, and be converted [stop your sinful ways], that your sins may be wiped away [forgiven]” (Acts 3:19).
Our Pride Kills Us
The reason we don’t correctly run to God for His unfathomable mercy (helping grace), which is waiting for us, to bring us to a truly contrite (sorrowful) heart to save us, is from our PRIDE. “God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble” (James 4:6).
God hates our pride. (cf. Proverbs 8:13). Our pride–arrogance, vanities, jealousies, self-serving heart, stubbornness, unwillingness to see our faults–from our hard hearts, blinds us to the Way. It confuses us to what is right from wrong, obscures the truth from a lie, and blinds us to the misery of our sinfulness that lives within us. Then we lack true sorrow for for our trespasses and choose sin over God’s sanctifying grace.
From this blindness, many never gain enough humility to see our true need for Jesus’s mercy (help to obtain a saving faith); we wind up only seeing Jesus as our help for us on earth and pretty much forget all about salvation. Then we guide ourselves and others to our doom (cf. Luke 6:39), all the long thinking we are saved.
Truly, when we have much pride, we will see evil as good and good as evil and wholeheartedly believe we are correct (cf. Isaiah 5:20) in so many aspects of our life and faith. It is a horrifying state to live in and most are clueless such a problem exists.
“They [the proud] are unable to perceive this light [the Way], for their eyes are sick with pride”
–Jesus to St. Bridget of Sweden (Revelations, Ch. 30).
Our pride causes us to have little or no wisdom (cf. Proverbs 11:2). Then we believe a lie and from that lie, we lack of true humility (don’t know our sinfulness) and consequently we never grow into having true contrition (true sorrow) for every sin.
The proud, who suffer much blindness, who read that very few Christians are saved as St. Augustine teaches, either:
- don’t believe the saint,
- misinterpret the saint’s words so to remain blind,
- point to a misunderstanding of the Word, hoping to some how justify our sinfulness, refusing to see,
- believe that from our perceived good works and faithful life of prayer and devotions, we are one of the “few” who are saved.
However in contrast, the truly humble or ones who desire true humility–ones who know their great sinfulness–who don’t suffer from the presumption of salvation or not enough presumption to completely blind them–they cry out to God, “Oh, Lord help me to gain a saving faith, ‘I do believe, [but] help my unbelief!‘ (Mark 9:24)…teach me the Way…give me a truly sorrowful heart for every sin so I may desire you alone and embrace your saving mercy.”
I know it is very hard to know the Way, largely because most have been misguided our entire life, and it is doubly as hard to see our lack of humility, especially if we don’t know how to look, but if we want to grow at all, please at least humble ourselves enough to believe the saints, who have far greater wisdom than we do and cry out to God, “teach us the true ways of true holiness so we too may be saved by Your mercy.”
“Every proud heart is an abomination to the Lord; be assured that none will go unpunished” (Proverbs 16:5).
“The vast majority of Christians [even the faithful] are enveloped in the most shocking ignorance [of their faith]” –St. John Baptist Vianney (Sermons of the Cure of Ars, Lost Works).
Obtaining Salvation is Very Difficult
I know it is hard to believe obtaining salvation is difficult and that “scarcely anyone is saved” as St. Alphonosus says in his, Discourse to the Brethren of a Confraternity, since most of us have been deceived our whole life into thinking that mercy will save us if we just have some belief in Jesus. But that just isn’t true.
The saints and the Word concur perfectly with St. Alphonosus and warn us that “the just man shall scarcely be saved.”(1 Peter 4:18-19). Why don’t we believe the Word and the saints who have far greater wisdom than we do?
Truly, we don’t need just “some” belief in Christ to be saved, we need a true saving belief in Jesus: a faith so great that JESUS IS THE WAY, that we come to truly hate everything that is opposed to the Way…especially everything that is opposed to love of the Cross (suffering and sacrificing for the salvation of souls). To obtain this faith, we need a repentance that can lead to the Truth.
“[I pray] God will grant them [us] repentance that leads to knowledge of the truth, and that they [we] may return to their [our] senses out of the devil’s snare, where they [we] are entrapped by him, for his will.” (2 Timothy 2:25-26).
Sadly, the devil has caught us so greatly in his trap; it is as if we are looking for any excuse to justify our sins and think mercy will save us, even if we lack sorrow, so we can stay blind, not feel guilt and remain in our trespasses. We don’t have a horror for sin nor much love for God!
“The path leading to Heaven is so narrow and so rough, so overgrown, so dark and difficult to discern, that there are many who never find it their whole life long. And those who do find it are constantly exposed to the danger of deviating from it, of mistaking their way, and unwittingly wandering away from it, because it is so irregular and overgrown.”
–St. Jerome, Doctor of the Church (Commentary on Matthew)
“Make no mistake: God is not mocked, for a person will reap only what he sows” (Galatians 6:7), and if we don’t sow in tears of true repentance for all of our sins, we will reap the disaster of eternal suffering.
Hate All Sin
If we truly love God and are truly sorry for our offences against God, we must HATE ALL SIN.
“Let love be sincere; hate what is evil [all sin]” (Romans 12:9).
I have been talking a lot about hating sin. True hatred of sin is much more than we might think. But to start understanding it we need to realize it is much more than simply feeling badly about sinning. This hatred, which is true, isn’t in word alone (cf. 1 John 3:18) either. Like I said, how can we truly love God and truly hate our sins, if we aren’t running to God wholeheartedly for guidance and strength, making resolutions and changes in our life, doing all we can to stop ALL of our sins?
God deserves our love not our malice. If we aren’t amending our life, to “stop sinning” (1 Corinthians 15:34), our great love for God and hatred for sin we claim to have is just a lie. God’s grace is surely enough to take away our sins, if we allow Him (cf. 2 Corinthians 12:9).
The sad reality is, we don’t correctly seek God and as a result, we are not accepting His transforming grace and changing.
We aren’t stopping our sins! We continue in them day in and day out thinking this is just who we are, or perhaps we feel we just can’t stop, or maybe we think our sins are just venial and nothing to be concerned about.
We have a great lack of hatred for sin and prove complacency with our offences–great and small alike–against God because we don’t change…but with God’s grace (our strength), we most certainly can and must.
What little love we have for God! Most of us aren’t trying to stop all of our sins; we are apparently fine with many of them. Sadly, most aren’t even trying to stop any of them. We say we are sorry for our sins, but our sorrow is far from true, starting with the fact that we put no or such little effort into changing.
The reality is most don’t even know what true sorrow is–as I will explain later– so we aren’t working to obtain that goal, and we are unknowingly rejecting God’s saving mercy for bounds of sins. Lord help us! (cf. 1 Corinthians 6:9-11).
“Put an end to all this sin put an end to it, my dear Brethren: know that the greater the patience that God has had with you [in trying to teach you the Way so you will change], the greater will be the chastisement [punishment] that he reserves for you [in hell], if you do not hasten to amend your life.”
–St. Alphonsus, Doctor of the Church, (Exercises of the Missions, Ch. 1)
We Can’t See Our Sins
The real problem is most of us have been so deceived that we intentionally cover (hide) our sins, so to stay in them without guilt…but we don’t know we are doing this. Therefore, we don’t see the vast ways we reject God for sin nor know of our great need to repent and change. We perhaps will see a couple of sins, thinking that is all we have, when we are really drowning in them.
One of the big problems is, we don’t know how to love, and we are addicted to love from others. We want to love and that is good, but we have been tricked into thinking loving someone is making them smile and feel happy so we spend our life trying to do that for others and obtaining it for ourselves. Now sometimes there is nothing wrong with seeking to please another or bringing a smile to another’s face but that surely isn’t the example of what God showed us true love is so that should never be our goal. What is the ultimate goal for why we do what we do? Is it just to make someone happy…I hope not. That isn’t love. To learn more please read “How Can I Really Love.”
We may think we are such a loving person from our outward acts of love, but in God’s eyes we very well might be a misery drowning in pride, priding ourselves on our “good works,” craving the love of the word (idle chatter, complements, things, and all sorts of attention from family and friends) and not love from God alone. We should be running from the pleasures of the world, but we are running to them to find love and happiness and not God.
“One who does not renounce all creatures that captivate the heart…will never attain to My love.”
–St. Anthony Claret, (The Golden Key to Heaven, Meditation 22)
Most of the time when we think we are loving another, sadly our “good deeds” are done from prideful misguided motives. We just don’t recognize the self-love and poor choices coming from our actions because our sins have blinded us. Everything we do must have the ultimate intention to guide others to the Light, as that was Jesus’ intention for all He did.
Sadly, we wind up filling up ourselves and others with worldly love pulling us and others right away from God and His perfect love. We aren’t really loving one another but tragically, we are helping to kill them.
We have been tricked. We don’t know the Way and think we are righteous because we have so many friends and everyone loves us, because we believe we have a great relationship with God, or perhaps we think we are saved because we have changed some parts of our lives and consider ourselves good people, but if we only honestly looked into our hearts, we would see we aren’t really trying to become SAINTS: those who don’t want to sin, who intentionally “deny himself [our will for worldly pleasure] and take up his cross daily [not complain about suffering and challenges] and follow me [truly live the Word by choosing the cross]” (Luke 9:23), just like God has commanded of us.
Sadly, we are still ignoring many of God’s commands. We might agree with God’s law, but we don’t understand that we really need to obey it. We still haven’t abandoned (still desire) countless sins and pleasures and justify why that is perfectly fine. Yet, we must work to obey God and desire God alone/not be attached to—long for—any sin or anything but God (no idolatry).
“If they believed in the eternal joy of Heaven and in the horrific torments of hell, they would desire nothing but me. If they believed that I see and know all things and have power over all things and that I demand a judgment over all, they would hate the world, and they would fear more to sin before me than before men….Their hope is vain, because they hope that their sin will be forgiven without justice and a right judgment…Their love for me is completely cold.”
–Jesus to St. Bridget of Sweeden (Revelations Ch. 39)
Pope St. John Paul II speaks in length about this reality of humanity losing the sense of sin in his Apostolic Exhortation on Reconciliation and Penance as he tell us, “When the conscience is weakened [from sin] the sense of God is also obscured, and as a result…the sense of sin is lost. This explains why my predecessor Pius XI, one day declared…that ‘the sin of the century is the loss of the sense of sin.'”
If we want Eternal Life we must become humble–come to know our sinfulness–our we will die. God tells us, “If you love me, you will obey my commandments [the entire Word]” (John 14:15)…we need to know where we are failing to obey so we can seek His grace to amend our ways.
But since most don’t see ourselves in the correct light–even if we think we obey and love God–from the great deception that lives in us, we actually obey little from our sadly little love for God and great love for sin. Truly, this is the horrible reality for most.
“Unfortunately, such a large body of Christians do not now themselves [their sinfulness] and do not even try to know themselves. They follow routines and habits, and they do not want to see reality. They are blind, and they move along in their blindness.”
–St. John Vianney (The Sermons of the Cure of Ars, Routine Followers)
Tragically, most Christians aren’t growing in true faithfulness, but only growing in a facade of the faith while still justifying our sinfulness, still staying in spiritual infancy, while being deceived that we are “faithful” since we grow in prayers, works and knowledge of the faith. We still continue in our sinful habits without change.
We greatly lack wisdom “fear of the Lord”–fear of sin–therefore, we never grow in true faith towards Life (cf. Proverbs 19:23). Those prayers, works and knowledge could lead to a saving faith, but it doesn’t for most because we have so much pride and are rejecting the grace they send or could send.
From being deceived, we wind up only blaspheming God’s Holy Name…not truly living the Christian faith. Sadly, most don’t know the true faith, greatly lack a true horror for sin and horribly cause many injuries to God as a result.
“Through the Blood of My only-begotten Son, as I have said, men are not grateful, but, going from bad to worse, and from guilt to guilt, even persecuting Me with many injuries, taking so little account of the graces which I have given them [to help save them]…by divine justice, the greater their suffering in eternal damnation [shall be].”
–God the Father to St. Catherine of Sienna, Doctor of the Church, (Dialogue, Treatise of Discretion)
Of course God’s incredible mercy wants to save us and will save us no matter how many sins we commit, but from God’s justice, that is ONLY if we are truly sorry for each and every one of our crimes against Him. And we aren’t truly sorry for any sin, if we aren’t resolved in doing all we can to stop…that is the most basic requirement for true sorrow. Please don’t believe the lie or we will surely die.
Look at Our Lack of Peace
We can’t work to stop any of our sins, if we refuse to see them. How do we know if we have the true faith…the Word says to “test yourselves” (2 Corinthians 13:5). We won’t see most of our sins unless we look for them.
Denial leads to doom and boy do we love to deny that we are at fault. We will come up with a thousand lies to cover our sins since our pride can’t bear being guilty. If we want to Live this must stop. We must look at our actions and see how we respond to life’s challenges (our tests) to see our errors.
Everyone is good and acts well when things go as we desire, but how are we when God allows us to carry a cross? Have we passed the test or are we riddled with unrepentant/unchanging sin?
It is easy to see if we are living the faith, if we want. Every time we become angry, complain, worry, impatient, frustrated, anxious, have self-pity, are in a bad mood, and suffer anything outside of peace…bingo, those are our sins. This isn’t just how we are…no, these are our sins, or at least some of them. God promises us great peace, even when we are hungry, tired and sick, when we obey and trust in Him. “You maintain peace; in peace, because of our trust in you“ (Isaiah 26:3). Believe!
“Lovers of your law have much peace; for them there is no stumbling block” (Psalm 119:165).
We obviously don’t love the law very much, nor trust in God’s will very well either, as our distress during suffering and challenges proves. Sadly, we still love much sin and are rejecting God’s peaceful grace as a result.
The only reason we are outside of peace is because we want our will and not God’s. Truly, even when we are suffering horribly and terribly sad, we will still remain in the peace of Christ, if we trust in His will: that whatever He allows to happen will lead to great good but that is only for those who trust in Him.
Sadly, we mostly want our will, therefore most of our suffering/challenges are in vain or we only gain a small fraction of the grace God truly has to offer because we have such little faith. Truly, “if you were dead to yourself [your will] you would not be so disturbed” as St. Gemma Galgani’s Guardian Angel told her (autobiography part 4).
We must die to our selves–lose our self-will–have no goals in our life except filling God’s will, not just some of the time, but all of the time if we want to Live (cf. John 12:24-25 ). We can’t want our will over God’s…we must truly believe God knows the Way.
“Our whole life and salvation depend upon uniting our wills to the will of God.”
–St. Alphonosus, Doctor of the Church (Conformity to the Will of God, Med. 98)
All of our issues with not being able to handle suffering or problems in life, is not of God. God doesn’t want us crumble under His cross. No, HIS GRACE, when we accept it, is to makes us strong through the cross and teach us, so we can grow towards a saving faith, (cf. 2 Corinthians 12:9) not so we can run around in self-pity and despair. The cross is meant to save us!
We shouldn’t become stressed or upset over anything (except sin–and even then it should be met with much patience and sorrow, not anexity). As St. Faustina said, when we trust in God, we should “fear nothing except sin” (Diary #309). True trust being great peace!
Truly, His “burden [cross will become] light” (Matthew 11:28-30), when we accept His healing transforming grace. We just need to learn how to gain God’s strength and stop rejecting it.
No Self-Knowledge, No Humility, No Hope
To accept God’s grace, we need humility and that comes from gaining self-knowledge of our sinfulness. How can we have true contrition if we don’t even want to see our sins? We can’t.
Of course we need to read the Word and the commandments to learn what sins are, but there is so much more than that. There are sins that are easily seen and ones we need to look deeper to know. But if we love God, we will want to know them all so we can stop offending Our Lord.
“There is no attaining to God without self-knowledge; for from such knowledge alone come humility and the fear of God, which is the beginning of [obtaining the goal of] salvation.”
–St. Bernard of Clairvaux, Doctor of the Church (His Last Work).
Therefore, when we notice our lack of peace during our day. We simply need to stop and look into WHY we responded in such a sinful (unloving/impatient/unpeaceful/untrusting) way and didn’t contentfully relent to God’s will knowing that is truly what is best. Please don’t blame a lack of food, medication, tired or running late, etc. for why we are irritable. It is from a lack of grace from our sins rejecting it. Sure those issues might make it harder to love, but with grace “nothing” makes us stumble. That isn’t the WHY we are looking for…that is just an excuse as to why we sinned not the real reason.
The WHY we need is something like this, lets say we were very busy and had our entire day planned, then someone called and said they needed us to help them. Not wanting to be seen as a unchatarable person, we stopped what we were doing but with a complaining heart helped another. Why were we such an unloving servant? The WHY might be, “I sinned because I didn’t want to let go of my will when tested and wanted to do what I desired and not to suffer (be inconvenience). I wanted things to go the way I planned since I’m self-serving, not a true servant of Christ, who trusts in myself and not what God has allowed for me to do.” That blatant honest WHY is how we will come to know the sin under the sin and grow in humility.
Our misery will be reveled in this way as we examine our conscience. Sure there is much more involved than just this in coming to know our sinfulness, but this is a beginning. Please read the article “How to Know My Sins” to learn more.
After we come to see some sins, we need to look to see if we are honestly in great pursuit of God’s grace to stop these sins. Then we will see at least some of the sins we lack sorrow for, and what we need to change. We will know when we are correctly seeking God’s transforming grace, and making resolutions to amend our ways because those sins will be leaving, not staying the same.
Here is an example: Lets say someone treats us poorly, do we really have pity on them and “bless those who curse you” (Luke 6:28), loving our cross or do we feel offended? Then do we think about the great offence that was committed against us as we fill our self up with self-pity, become angry and complain? To justify our sins, we might say, “I have every right to treat him with anger. I’ve been offended” or we might think, “Oh, everyone does this; we are just sinners.”
Yes, that is true, we are all just sinners but that can’t be an excuse to sin. Plus, if we justify our sins by thinking we, who are great sinners ourselves, have a right to anger and self-pity and can lack mercy towards another–rather than offer love, pity them for their lack of grace, and give them true forgiveness (not in word alone but in our actions)–we will die from having an approval of our sins. We are not sorry. There is a reason “those who find it [Heaven] are few.” (Matthew 7:14). Don’t follow the lost, but those who have a horror for sin. Follow the saints.
The “few” who have accepted God’s grace, have allowed God to remove“all bitterness, fury, anger, shouting, and reviling” (Ephesians 4:31) as the Word says we must do. Honestly, have we done this…are we even trying? Are we really obeying the Word…living the true faith, or do we still habitually lack love when God tests us? Do we pass one test, but fail many others? The truth is easy to see, if we want. Please understand, without love we are nothing (cf. 1 Corinthians 13:2). Do we believe!
After a life time of prayers and seeking God’s mercy, have we still rejected most of God’s transforming grace and still can’t even show love and mercy to others who correct us or who we perceive as sinning against us. Truly, “It will be easy for you to accept a harsh or disrespectful word [if you are humble]” as St. Maximilian Kolbe teaches in his spiritual writings (# 969). Where is our faith?
“If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart [that he is faithful], his religion is vain” (James 1:26).
Truly, we are not yet faithful if we still can’t habitually love, under any circumstance–no matter what horrible cross we have to suffer. It is true, we have a billion excuses, filled with self-love, why we can’t obey God…please stop them and admit our guilt. Seek God’s grace, which wants to heal us of our misery and carry the crosses He allows us to bear, however long He wills, learning the Way and growing in wonderful holiness trusting in Him.
Venial Sins Easily Become Mortal
I know it is hard to believe that not hating a venial–less severe–sin is going to damn our souls, especially if we have been deceived into thinking venial sins are fine to commit. But the saints in their true wisdom tell us otherwise.
Understand that one venial sin can do us greater harm than all the forces of hell combined — for that is really true.”
–St. Teresa of Avila, Doctor of the Church (Autobiography, Ch. 24)
To help up us understand why this is so, we need to know…
Why the Catholic Church is the Surest Way to Salvation.
“Among the penitent’s acts [the person confessing their sins] contrition [sorrow] occupies first place [since it is needed for salvation]. Contrition is sorrow of the soul and detestation [hate] for the sin committed, together with the resolution not to sin again [to become a saint]” (CCC #1451).
What the Saints Say
“All are called to holiness [this is obedience to God and needed for eternal life]: ‘Be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect [must be our goal].’ In order to reach this perfection the faithful should use the strength dealt out to them by Christ’s gift [His grace], so that . . . doing the will of the Father in everything, they may wholeheartedly devote themselves to the glory of God [live for God] and to the service of their neighbor. Thus the holiness of the People of God will grow in fruitful abundance, as is clearly shown in the history of the Church through the lives of so many saints” (CCC #2013).
Our Lady of Fatima
“I am the Lady of the Rosary, I have come to warn the FAITHFUL to amend their lives and ask for pardon for their sins. They must not offend Our Lord any more, for He is already too grievously offended by the sins of men. People must say the Rosary. Let them continue saying it every day [for my help].”
God wants you in Heaven. Hear Him crying out pleading for you to repent and change. He gave you your life to live for Him. Don’t reject Him. Come embrace His loving mercy. It is waiting for you. He will take away your sins, if you only allow Him. Let go of the world and live for Jesus. Eternity is forever!