GOD WANTS YOU IN HEAVEN
Learn why the saints teach:
"VERY FEW CHRISTIANS ARE SAVED"
and learn what we need to do to live
If we look at the world today, we can see a world hurting with much of anger and pain. We see a world confused, rejecting The Way and needing its Savior to change us, so we can have His peace. But please know, it isn’t just the world, who is suffering, we are too.
One of the great proofs we have that we aren’t living the faith correctly is when we are not experiencing the “great peace” (Psalm 119:165) God promises to those who love Him. Sure, we have peace some of the times when things are going the way we desire, but when a cross comes into our lives (our test), we lose it.
If we were truly committed to Christ and perfectly united with Him, the source of perfect peace, we would constantly have His peace within us, especially during the cross.
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you” (John 14:27).
But when we sin, we reject God’s peace… and for some of the sins we commit, they are in fact the “deadly sin[s]” (1 John 5:16), which break our saving union with God–reject God’s saving forgiving mercy–causing us to suffer many horrible consequences.
I know a lot of us love Jesus. We want Him as part of our lives. We see Him blessing us, and we think we have Him and are living the faith correctly. But since we obviously aren’t accepting this perfect peace God gives since we are still suffering from many frustrations, complaints, arguing, worries and bounds of other ways we show our lack of peace, is it possible we aren’t saved, and the salvation we all assume we have isn’t really ours? “I am afraid that, as the serpent deceived Eve by his cunning, your thoughts may be corrupted from a sincere [saving] commitment to Christ.” (2 Corinthians 11:3).
Truly, is it possible we have been “deceived” (Revelation 12:9) and are not actually saved–“For the gate is narrow and the road is hard that leads to life, and there are FEW who find it” (Matthew 7:14)–like The Word speaks about and the saints are warning us is occurring.
“The elect [those who obtain Heaven]… are few in number. It would cause us to faint away from grief to learn how surprisingly small is their number.”
–St. Louis De Montfort, (A Letter to the Friends of the Cross, Part II, #14)
I know this can be hard to believe. But please don’t be so proud to think we are given more wisdom than the saints. They want to guide us to Life. Eternity is forever!
Christians are Dying!
Please know, Our Lord’s Sacred Heart of Love is being stabbed profusely over the loss of so many souls. It is unfathomable how many people are dying: choosing Hell, “eternal punishment” (Matthew 25:46), but don’t even know it… until “the day of judgment” (Matthew 11:22) when it is too late.
My friend, please know, we aren’t automatically saved just because we are “Christians”… or because we go to church or do any good work. No. “He saved us, not because of any works of righteousness that we had done” (Titus 3:5) but from His love.
But yet, please don’t be deceived. Not all “good” people go to Heaven… that is a fallacy… that isn’t how salvation works. Thinking we are saved, forgiven of our sins, because of something we do… because we are so “good” is a lie of the devil to keep us lukewarm and not concerned with our eternity. And our confessions, which are supposed to be saving us, simply aren’t true either. We don’t know how to ACCEPT God’s forgiveness. We have been deceived.
“There are many who arrive at the faith, but few who are led into the heavenly kingdom.”
–St. Gregory the Great, Doctor of the Church, (“On the Gospels,” Homily 19, Sunday Sermons of the Great Fathers)
Please know, this isn’t only a concern for those who aren’t striving to live the faith, but from the devils great deception, shockingly, this is an equally great problem for the “faithful” too, as the saints teach and is explained later.
We are Rejecting Salvation
We must know, this unfathomable unmerited gift of Eternal Life, this perfect forgiveness of our sins that Christ suffered and died to give us, we REJECT when we don’t repent, with TRUE SORROW, for any of our sins. Yes, if we aren’t truly sorry for offending God–with any sin–we reject salvation for sin.
This is because one sin is of infinite offence to our infinitely perfect Lord; “[sin] is more hateful to God than any matter” (St. Robert Belarmine). Yes, just ONE sin we don’t repent of–that we don’t truly hate–rejects Heaven for “Hell… the unquenchable fire” (Mark 9:43). Please don’t be deceived.
“Whoever keeps the whole law but fails in ONE point has become guilty of all of it [and must repent to be saved]” (James 2:10).
Therefore, please know, “there is a sin which is always ‘unto death’ (1 John 5:16): the sin for which we do not repent [lack true sorrow for].” as St. Mark the Ascetic teaches in his work “On Those Who Think that They are Made Righteous by Works” (Ch. 41).
If we want to become saved–free from our great guilt of sin–we must ACCEPT God’s gift… His forgiveness He agonized on the cross to give us, by obtaining true contrition for every one of our sins., because if we lack true sorrow for any sin that is is “deadly.” But, how can we be truly sorry and repent of a single sin, so to accept His forgiveness, if we won’t even:
- admit our sins, or
- work hard to stop committing them.
We can’t. That isn’t true repentance. We must at least be willing to admit our guilt and work hard to stop the sin if we are to have any kind of sorrow for our offences against God.
“Those who conceal their sins do not prosper, but those who confess and forsake [leave] them obtain mercy” (Proverbs 28:10).
Therefore, any sin we conceal or refuse to become firmly resolved to leave, we don’t have TRUE sorrow for those offences, and if we don’t grow in faith to come to truly repent before our death, any one of those sins will reject God’s forgiveness and damn us forever. Please don’t be deceived.
Also, please don’t fall into the temptation to look at others and what we see as their “greater” sins, for that will blind us from seeing our own. Sure someone might commit a particular sin more greatly than ours. But what does any of that matter, when just ONE of our own sins that we don’t truly repent rejects it all. Please look into ourselves to learn where we are going wrong. Eternity is forever!
Therefore, how many sins won’t we even admit (we conceal) by pretending like they are actually good and we just continue in them? Each one is deadly. Please know, each sin we have been deceived into justifying as good (see bad as good), whether we have committed the sin or not, proves our lack of hatred for sin and rejects God (salvation) for sin/evil (damnation). This is because it is a “deadly sin” (1 John 5:16) to not “hate what is evil [sin] (Romans 12:9).
Please know, it is a great sin to darken ourselves from the Light by accepting evil as good. What a rejection of Love!
“The light came into the world, but people preferred darkness to light” (John 3:19).
But most sadly, we do this. For example: How many of us feel we have the right to treat others badly if they have done us wrong? But I tell you, there is never a time when it is justifiable to do wrong to another. “Do not return evil for evil, or insult for insult; but, on the contrary, [return] a blessing” (1 Peter 3:6). If we do wrong to another (sin), and don’t truly repent, from our lack of hatred for our offence against God, we will reject God’s saving mercy for sin.
No matter what someone does to us, we can never justify it as acceptable to hate another… to want another to pay for what they have done or to want to do to them what they did to us (to seek revenge)… It is never acceptable to become angry at, to reject, to hold grudges, to be cold towards or to ignore another when they have offend us; nor is it appropriate to gossip or slander anyone no matter what they have done. It is not okay to to yell at (disrespect) another, to be rude, impatient or non-understanding towards another’s imperfections… among all of the other un-kind things we do to others. God calls us to bless others, not harm them.
“Bless [do good to] those who persecute [you], bless and do not curse [do not do wrong to] them” (Romans 12:14).
Those above sins are horrible, but we commit them and continue in them, much of the time even pretending like they are good/justified. Therefore, to not be deceived and die from our unrepentant sins, please ask ourselves, who won’t we properly love because of what they have done to us? Now is the time to seek Mercy to help us change, or we will reject Eternal Life because we love our sins and not what is good (God).
If we were truly sorry we were sinning, we would recognize that we are sinning, never making excuses as to why it is acceptable or pretending like we didn’t even do it. Then, after admitting our guilt, we would learn what caused us to sin. From there, we would repent, make a resolution on how to amend the sin, as we seek God for mercy (help), so we can stop the sin… and of course, we would make right (however we can) for the wrong we have done. But tragically, from being deceived, we aren’t doing this.
“The deceiver of the whole world—he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him [and the world was tricked by them into hating good and loving sin]” (Revelation 12:9).
Please know, if we don’t at least, gain those desires to admit our sins and turn from every last one of them, we lack true sorrow for our offences against God and will reject Christ’s forgiveness for sin. This is the truth. Yes, one sin we aren’t truly sorry that we have offend God with, rejects it all.
If we love good and hate evil, we must love, forgive and understand others, like Christ loves, forgives and understands our weaknesses. “[For] if you do not forgive others, neither will your Father forgive your transgressions [since you want forgiveness from God and others when you do wrong but from your pride, you won’t even forgive others for their sins, because you love yourself and not what is good].” (Matthew 6:15).
Truly, if we don’t come to recognize those unloving behaviors as never acceptable (as sins), and become truly resolved to amend them, then we can’t repent, and we will die loving those sins instead of God and forfeit Eternal Life for evil. Tragic!
We “MUST turn from evil and do good” (1 Peter 3:11). Yet, from looking at all of those above sins, how many of us just repeat so many of them over and over again, since we put little to no effort into stopping them… Oh, we are definitely without a true resolve to amend so many of them, since even though God’s mercy–all the strength in the world–is there to help us rid ourselves of our sins, we still aren’t leaving them.
Habitual Venial Sins Are Deadly
From the devil deceiving us so greatly, I can’t even begin to tell you how many sins we try to justify as good or try to convince ourselves we have nothing to worry about when committing them. It is really unfathomable what little hatred for sin we have. But God willing, after reading this article, we will begin to see and gain some concern about our sins and salvation. Then we can start seeking Our Savior correctly to save us.
Truly, how many horrible habitual sins do we have, because we aren’t sincerely striving to amend them.. because we lack true sorrow for them?
“If a person is at the moment of death [and still] possessed of a vicious habit, his soul will descend into hell [for being attached to sin and not God].”
–St. John Vianney (Sermons of the Cure d’Ars, Last Sunday After Pentecost)
We have so many sins we need to seek Mercy for grace (help) to even be able to admit them, never mind to gain a true desire to do all we can to turn from evil and do good.
Please know, all of our habitual sins, whether they are venial (a lesser serious sin) or mortal (a gravely serious sin), that we either disregard as no big deal or lack a sincere effort to change, we simply don’t truly hate.
For most of us, it is shocking to hear that our venial sins, which we habitually commit from a lack of resolve to leave them are mortal–“deadly sin[s]” (1 John 5:16), since we have spent our lives being told they weren’t anything to worry about. But not TRULY wanting to stop offending God, with any sin, is a fantastic lack of love for God, which makes any sin a GRAVE/DEADLY sin.
“Sins are increased through habitual practice, and a venial sin that could have been pardoned through contrition [alone] becomes a serious one [mortal] through a person’s negligence [not working to stop the sin] and scorn [disregarding it of importance].”
–Jesus to St. Bridget of Sweden (Revelations Ch. 19)
Yes, it is a mortal sin to not care that we or even others are offending our Beloved Lord with any sin. That is just terrible. Yet, sure scores of people don’t care if we offend God. We have been so deceived that we just don’t think about sin or offending God. It just isn’t a thought we have. We greatly need to become awakened to what awaits us if we don’t repent and change.
But, for the rest of us, who are aware of sin, we really aren’t any better. For how many of us are only concerned about the “grave” sins, and we have little to no concern about all of the times we venially offend God.
Sadly, we venially “grieve” (Ephesians 4:30) God by our sinfulness, and we just don’t care enough to work hard to stop so many of them. We are apparently ok with causing “His heart [to be] grieved” (Genesis 6:6)… and have no problem with that great lack of love for Our Creator. But please know, it is an abomination of love to not be horrified that we are offending God. That proves a great lack of hatred for our sins and that we are far from being truly repentant.
“Let love be genuine; hate what is evil [sin]” (Romans 12:9).
Therefore, our unrepentant mortal sins aren’t the only sins which are damning us. Our unrepentant venial sins–the sins we lack true hatred for–are causing us to reject God for sin as well.
Oh, perhaps we think we are truly sorrowful for our sins and truly love God because we have some feelings of sorrow and love. But sadly, we prove our sorrow for our sins and love for Our Lord are far from true, since we still choose to stay in many of our trespasses. We aren’t sincerely working hard to avoid and leave so many of our sins. We simply don’t hate sin enough to become truly resolved to stop.
Therefore, how much sorrow for any sin if without reservation we habitually commit it?… not much, if any… diffidently not true sorrow. So, our unrestrained habitual sins need to leave if we want Eternal Life.
“If you are a habitual sinner [who isn’t working hard to amend them]…You are very ill; you are one of those invalids who, as St. Thomas of Villanova says, are seldom cured [by your or others prayers]; you are on the brink of perdition [Hell].”
—St. Alphonsus, Doctor of the Church, (Preparation for Death, Habit of Sin)
Please know, everything we think, say or do that Christ or a saint wouldn’t do and continue in are the deadly habitual sins that must leave. Boy there are a lot of them. We are greatly attached to sin.
Oh, how many times have we not loved God–offend Him–and we just didn’t care? Each one of those times was a mortal offence against God, even if it wasn’t habitual. Because not caring that we have offended God is an abomination of love for Him; it is a grave sin.
“Never be careless about [sinning]… Gain this fear of God [fear of sinning against Him]… realize what a serious thing it is to offend Him. Do your utmost to learn this and to turn it over in your minds; for our [eternal] life, and much more than our life [the lives God calls us to save], depends upon this virtue being firmly planted in our souls.”
–St. Theresa of Avila (The Way of Perfection, Ch. 41)
If we were living the faith correctly and sincerely hated to offend God–or even if we one day wanted to sincerely hate our sins–we wouldn’t ignore any of our sins or just change a little, and then become complacent with the rest of our sinfulness.
No; if we were living the faith correctly, we would DAILY seek God for grace (help), make resolutions and work hard to see we stop them ALL… and from our efforts being true, all of our sins would be little by little leaving. But our sins aren’t progressively leaving. We are staying the same.
Perhaps, when we first found God, we changed some parts of our lives and are now greatly improved, and that is good. But what happens is, we grow to a certain point and then we stop… thinking we are now “good.” Yet, we are still far from being a perfect saint… but all of the our rest of our sinfulness we just ignore and become complacent with. Please know, those sins are deadly. We don’t TRULY hate them or we would certainly still be working hard towards leaving them ALL and be becoming like Christ–being “imitators of God” (Ephesians 5:1)–The One we should be following. But we aren’t.
Sure some of us might be continually growing in knowledge of the faith, or in prayers, or in works… since God has given us many gifts to advance in such things… but from being greatly deceived, the one thing that prevents us from obtaining Heaven–SIN–we aren’t even concerned about. Oh, the deceiver has us. As a result, we are now in darkness, not knowing The Way to Heaven. Yes, our unrepentant sins have blinded us into living in great darkness, since we aren’t really following Christ.
“Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness” (John 8:12).
Yet, if we want to be saved, we must repent… truly repent… admit, hate and leave the sin so to love God. For “No one who abides in him keeps on sinning” (1 John 3:4); we strive with all of our heart to stop. Therefore, how may commands of God have we committed and don’t truly detest… that we habitually continue in since we lack a sincere effort to change. What about our:
- Sexual Impurity: impure things we wear, watch, think, listen to, say or do (Ephesians 5:5),
- Gossiping/slander: speaking poorly about another (Exodus 23:1),
- Love of the world’s pleasures: seeking the world for happiness instead of God (1 John 2:15),
- Anger: upset over not getting what we want and/or having a lack understanding and forgiveness of others (Colossians 3:8),
- Anxiety: wanting thing our way and not trusting in all God allows as leading to good (Philippians 4:6),
- Jealously: wanting what others have (James 3:16),
- Lust: desire for sexual pleasure for self-gratification (Romans 1:24),
- Want of Power: seeking knowledge, success, authority, or control to boost our pride (Philippians 2:3-4),
- Passion for Money: having the desire for money ruin the intentions of our hearts and actions (1 Timothy 6:10),
- Profanity: obscene/impure language (Colossians 3:8),
- Hatred of our crosses/suffering: not wanting to carry our cross/lack of trust in the cross (Romans 5:3),
- Lack of Self-control: lack of discipline to do what is right instead of wrong (2 Timothy 3:2-4),
- Laziness: loving self instead of doing what we should (Proverbs 13:4),
- Vanity: doing what will build-up our selves and not God/self-glory (1 Peter 3:3-4),
- Gluttony: having or craving more–money, food or material things–than we need (Sirach 37:31),
- Self-seeking: seeking what we want/our will and not doing what is best to love God and neighbor, but seeking to love/please ourselves (Romans 2:8)…
Oh, there are just so many habitual sins. Yet, this is just a fragment of our sinfulness, that most of us just ignore. We can make all of the excuses in the world as to why we are still continuing in them or we can pretend like we don’t even know they are sins. Yet, such knowledge of them is “written in their [our] hearts” (Romans 2:15)… therefore, not sincerely hating or neglecting to strive with our whole heart to leave any ONE of those sins kills.
We should be very concerned about our Eternal Life and heed The Word and “work out your salvation with fear and trembling.” (Philippians 2:12). We have so many sins we haven’t truly repented of and are rejecting God because of it.
This is why the faithful and non faithful alike are dying. We have no concern about our Eternal Life. Yet, we are supposed to be spending our lives seeking Our Savior to save us: to change our hearts and give us “a new heart, and a new spirit” (Ezekiel 36:26), that no longer thinks lightly of our sins but truly hates every one, so we can come to true repentance and be saved. But we aren’t. Most ignore our sinfulness and still cling to many of our sinful ways, and are suffering greatly because of it.
After a life time of being a “Christian” but not living the faith correctly, we are still seeing bad as good (justifying many sins as virtues) and possessed/attached to many horrible habitual sins, from our lack of sincere effort to stop offending God, and we are rejecting God for sin. Please don’t be deceived. Eternity is forever!
Ignoring Any Sin Kills
Ignoring our sins, like was said, is great proof of our lack of hatred for the sin and a lack of desire to leave them. Honestly, how many sins do we simply pay no attention to? We aren’t troubled by them. For most of us, it is all of them.
From mortal to venial sins, we hardly, if at all, think about our sins. We surely aren’t working with our whole heart being firmly resolved to not commit them. If anything, we think “Well, since venial sins don’t damn us, why worry about them?” Our hearts simply have no concern with the fact that we are offending God with so many sins. Where is our love for God?
“[Those habitual sins] how slight soever their objects may be, any one of them, not over come, is sufficient to prevent this union [dying united to God and not sin]. “
–St. John of the Cross, (Ascent of Mount Carmel, Ch 11)
Just look at our vast ways we aren’t like a perfect self-sacrificing saint. Yet, we are ignoring those sins: everything that Christ or a real saint wouldn’t do or should do.
How many of us open our mouths, day after day, and profanity, gossip, negativity or complaining just spill out when things don’t go the way we want. Heaven forbid someone does something we don’t like, then we are a mess of complaints about them. We are so far from loving and understanding them. But for most of us we don’t even realize we are doing this.
The evil one has deceived us so greatly, for many of us, we don’t even recognize those behaviors as sins and slandering others has become our common social past time as we bash others to our spouse, our friend, our co-worker, or anyone who would lister. “Can you believe what he did” we tell another, since instead of being with God in prayer praying for others, we spend our time gossiping and complaining about their imperfections. When most of the time our lack of love and understand of others is a far worse an offence against God than what we are complaining about. But we only have our eyes on others and can’t see ourselves.
Sadly, most are so deceived, we only consider murder, theft and alike as offences against God to be concerned about, and we ignore the rest? But sin is so much more.
“You MUST put them all away:… anger… slander, and obscene language out of your mouths” (Colossians 3:8).
Yes, they are all sins, sins we should be amending. All of our moments we are OUTSIDE OF PEACE are derived from sin. Therefore, when we feel upset, frazzled or lack the perfect serenity of God, we should be looking for the sins which have lead to such behaviors so we can change.
Please know, there is a reason why God tells us “do not complain” (James 5:9). That is great proof of our lack of trust in what God allows, as leading to our good. That is us wanting our will and not His.
“Do not complain as some of them did, and were destroyed by the destroyer” (1 Corinthians 10:10).
Yes, complaining is a horrible evil. It is us hating God’s will (what has occurred or what might occur) and wanting our own way. Please know, following God’s will is the only way to Life.
Truly, if we can’t learn how to follow God and trust our loving Lord only allows everything for the good of our souls (to bring us to a saving faith), then we really have no faith in Him. Jesus wants to bring us to a life of peace and true contrition for our sins (to save us), but if we don’t–stop complaining–how will we ever allow Him to lead us to Life… if we have made ourselves God (the one who really knows what is best).
Therefore, we must not only love others and stop complaining about them, we must also trust all that occurs in our lives as being part of God’s divine providence: what we need to experience for the salvation of our souls. That is, IF we seek Mercy to teach and guide us, especially through our crosses, to what we need to change so we can become more like Christ (learn how to truly hate our sins and love God).
Of course, we won’t always see the silver lining in all that happens, but if we don’t, we trust it is there, because we know God loves us. This is what faith in God is. But the deceiver has us. We just don’t understand… and we simply continue in our sins without a care in the world.
Souls, who have grown in faith to truly love God and now have a saving faith, have grown so much that they are far from complacent with a single sin. They are now “resolved to suffer death rather than commit a deliberate venial offence against God” as St. Alphonsus teaches in his sermon on Passion Sunday. Yes, a soul who’s mind is constantly set towards never offending God again and proves their desire is true since they would rather suffer than sin is a soul who has true hope for Eternal Life.
This is the kind of hatred for sin and love for God we must work hard to obtain, if we want Life, as described later. We must, in sincerity of heart, be willing to suffer rather than offend God, with any sin. That is when we truly hate our sins. We must love Our Lord more than our sins and ourselves.
Therefore, it isn’t the act of committing the venial sin that is killing us, but it is our lack of hatred for sinning which is.
“As for venial sins, I payed little attention; that is what destroyed me.”
–St. Teresa of Avila, Doctor of the Church, (Book of Her Life, Ch. 4)
Just like St. Teresa of Avila, who ignored her venial sins (lived lukewarm) before she decided to change her life to really love God (strove to sin no more), we ignore our sins too and have little to no hatred for offending Our Lord God Almighty with so many of them. Sadly, we have been deceived and don’t sincerely hate what is evil or we would at least be working hard to obey every command… the entire Word, even the slightest. But tragically, we aren’t. From being so greatly deceived, we have such little faith in God… such little love for Him; we have no problem with offending God with countless sins. Tragic!
“For NO ONE AT ALL can reach eternal life if he be not obedient [in action and/or heart/desire: sincerely not want to disobey God again]… The whole of your faith is founded upon obedience, for by it you prove your fidelity… This obedience is of such excellence that you all derive grace [to Live] from it, just as from disobedience you all derive death [reject grace from it].”
–God the Father to St. Catherine of Sienna (Treatise on Obedience)
Yes, every sin… not just our big sins but even the least sin we delight in/lust for (want/desire) so much that we won’t even sincerely strive to leave proves our great lack of fidelity to Christ and it is deadly.
“The smallest sin is enough to damn anyone… who does not repent.”
–Our Lord to St. Bridget (Revelations Bk 1, Ch. 32)
Everyone should know that we must sincerely hate our sins or we reject God for sin. God wrote this in our hearts. Yes, we must truly HATE SIN… ALL sin. Please don’t be deceived. “[I] detest the smallest sin” Jesus told to St. Faustina (Diary #1728). We need to too.
Therefore, not striving to leave the least of our sins proves we still haven’t died to that sin (lost our desire for that sin); it proves we still don’t understand the seriousness of one single sin, and that we still love sin instead of God. We must change. We aren’t repenting. We are damning our souls. We are staying in our sins and rejecting God for sin.
Boy, there are so many sins we aren’t sincerely resolved to amend. We greatly need Mercy to change us… to save us: to give us a heart that truly hates to offend God… a heart that is truly resolved to leave ALL of them, and would suffer any pain to see that happens. Please don’t be deceived.
This is why we are dying. Our Savior, who’s love for us is unfathomable, came to save us (He wants to forgive us), but tragically, we are rejecting Him. We aren’t repenting of all of our sins… we aren’t truly resolved–working hard–to leave ALL of our offences against Him, because we want to LOVE GOD. We actually want to love our sins. Our desire to leave our sins to love God simply isn’t true.
“There are no limits to the mercy of God, but anyone who deliberately refuses to accept his mercy by repenting [truly repenting], rejects the forgiveness of his sins and the salvation offered by the Holy Spirit.” (CCC #1864)
But we don’t have to die. With much grace, we can Live. This is why Christ came… to give us grace to help change, us so we can accept His forgiving mercy He died to give us.
“Only grace [showing the sinner his need to change and strengthening Him to do it] takes the sinner out of his habitual and customary bondage and relieves him from his fetters. In this way grace affords him an opportunity to choose an entirely new life and to attune himself to it.
If he avails himself of this opportunity [seeks God for grace and accepts it], then it will be a blessing for him [and he can obtain Life, if he persists to the end]. But if he does not take this opportunity [to be moved by grace], then he will be submerged again into the same deep sleep as before and will be thrown into the same abyss of destruction [Hell].”
–St. Theophan the Recluse (Turning the Heart to God, Ch. 4)
Please hear grace calling you right now. Don’t ignore God’s call. Turn to Him. We need grace! Oh, what little faith… what little love for God we really have! The devil has deceived us greatly. Oh, “how few the elect are” as St. Jerome, Doctor of the Church, warns us in his commentary on Matthew! Now is the time to seek Mercy to save us/ to change us.
Oh, Lord, we need someone to teach us these truths so we can learn how to LOVE YOU. We have been greatly deceived and have been driven to a life of complacency with our offences against You! Come to our rescue. We need to turn from darkness to Light!
“Turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God, so that they [we] may obtain forgiveness of sins and an inheritance [of Eternal Life]” (Acts 26:18).
Rejecting God for Sin
Like was said, every command of God–His directions to Life–that we don’t really hate, pay no attention to or put a half-hearted effort into obeying, we are rejecting God to remain in those sins. It is very important we come to see what we are failing to obey and change.
“The doers [obeyers] of the Law [are those] who will be justified [saved]” (Romans 2:13).
Therefore, what commands of God do we ignore? Do we even “observe the sabbath day [by resting and going to Church on Sunday] as the Lord, your God, commanded you” (Deuteronomy 5:12)? Probably not, since most Christians don’t actually attend Church weekly anymore. Of course, it is absolutely vital that we humbly fulfill this law, so we can receive the grace God intends to give us to proceeded towards Life.
But let’s say we are going to church. Yet, after all of our years of attending, are we still not able live so many commands? Are we even able to “deal patiently with the ignorant and erring” (Hebrews 5:2)? Or are we still so impatient and unforgiving towards others when they error, that we still get upset when things go wrong? Oh, our hearts are far from being patient and understanding (knowing one’s lack of grace or imperfections has caused another to error)… we simply aren’t willing to carry a cross and tolerate others frailties, but yet we want others to deal with us patiently and tolerate our sins. Oh, how self-absorbed we are.
Perhaps we are even troubled by something so slight… like maybe when someone pulls their car out in front of ours when we are driving? What kind of patience do we have after a life time of being “Christian”? Oh, what little grace we possess, because we have REJECTED GOD AND HIS GRACE FOR SIN.
Yet, what are we doing to change from our bounds of sins we continue in? If it isn’t patience we continue to lack, it is something else, since we haven’t humbly, correctly sought Christ, “who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29), to remove our desire for those sins. Oh, we might go to church and pray, and in our “thoughts” want to stop our sins, but if our desire is outside of word alone, we will have actions. Therefore, exactly what are we doing to “stop sinning” (1 Corinthians 15:34) even one sin? Did we even have a single resolution to amend one? If so, what was it and is that really enough? If not, what are we waiting for?
Truly, we are lucky if we seek Christ to help us remove one sin. Oh, we are far from seeking Him to give us a sincere desire to leave ALL of our sins, so we can obtain TRUE sorrow for every offence against Him.
Please know, it doesn’t matter how we acquired our sinful habits, if we aren’t daily making resolutions (creating a real plan to stop), working hard and seeking Mercy for strength to leave them… with our efforts proving to be true by changing, we don’t really hate those sins and are choosing those sins instead of God (rejecting God for sin).
Yes, we have been deceived; our repentance is far from true? We aren’t leaving our sins to love God, so we can accept His forgiveness; we are staying the same.
“[Only if they] turn from their wicked [sinful] ways, then I [God] will hear [their cries for mercy] from heaven, and will forgive their sin” (2 Chronicles 7:14).
To not stay blind to our sins we have grown accustomed to and ignore, ask someone else to describe our sins or our sinful personality traits if we can’t see them ourselves? They do exist. Pretending we aren’t sinners won’t save us. “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves” (1 John 1:8). We must seek Mercy to see and leave our sins, so we can grow into true hatred for them.
Therefore, how can we accept God’s forgiveness and become saved if we aren’t truly sorry for offending Him… if our belief in Jesus is so little that we don’t even SINCERELY want to leave our sins to love Him (to not offend Him)… if we don’t truly repent? We can’t. It doesn’t matter how “good” we are, ONE unrepentant sin, just one, which is of infinite offence to our infinitely perfectly Lord, will reject Heaven for Hell.
“For if those [fallen angles] who committed but one sin have merited the eternal punishment of hell, what will those [us] deserve who have committed many [if we don’t sincerely repent].”
–St. Francis Borgia (Second Treatise, Things which are below the earth ought to humble us before God)
So please fully understand, it isn’t the good we do that will save us… God’s mercy alone saves. But it is the bad which we don’t truly repent of that rejects that mercy which saves for sin. This is true. Please don’t be deceived.
We must repent–truly repent, which is quite “hard” (Matthew 7:14) to do, especially since we are so attached to our sins and refuse to see most of them (as explained later).
“REPENT and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins” (Acts 2:38).
Therefore, if we really believe following Jesus is The Way to Heaven, we must work hard to leave our sins so to obey all of His Laws (our directions to Life) and actually follow Him (do what He would do). Then He can remove our great attachment to sin, so we can embrace His mercy and live, because if we ignore any of God’s law, we lose it all.
“Neglect of God’s law [any law] brings inescapable punishment for the soul and that unquenchable fire.”
–St. John Chrysostom, Doctor of the Church, (On Marriage and Family Life, SVS pg. 89)
No wonder so few are saved. Oh, salvation is much harder to obtain than we ever thought. Please don’t be deceived. Horribly, “scarcely anyone is saved” as St. Alphonsus, Doctor of the Church, was explaining to Christians. Yes, this is true, despite what any non-sanctified person wants to try to convince us, so we continue to remain unconcerned with our eternity and die. Truly “scarcely anyone is saved.” WE MUST CHANGE!
Please know, St. Alphonsus doesn’t want us to despair; God will save us, but only, IF we sincerely with our whole heart turn to Him, as explained in this article. “Turn to Me and be saved” (Isaiah 45:22). Yes, St. Alphonsus is trying to get us to “wake up, and strengthen what remains and is on the point of death” (Revelations 3:2) before it is too late, so we can come to understand what is at stake if we don’t come to see and modify our lives.
The saints, in their vast wisdom, are telling us our belief in Christ simply isn’t true… it isn’t enough to accept His forgiving saving mercy, and we are damning our souls. Truly, we must seek to live the entire Word, obey all of it, if we are to grow in faith to ever truly hate sin and truly love God: have a contrition for our sins that can accept His saving forgiving mercy.
“He became the source of eternal salvation for all who OBEY Him” (Hebrews 5:9).
We Must Die to Our Sins
Please know, we can ask God for forgiveness, but when we haven’t grown enough in our faith to accept enough of God’s mercy (helping grace) to truly die to that sin–to lose our desire for that sin–we will reject His forgiveness for the sin, since we still have some kind of desire for the sin (haven’t died to the sin).
“In his own body he brought your sins to the cross, so that all of us, dead to sin [who no longer desire any sin], could live in accord with God’s will [and be saved]” (1 Peter 2:24).
Even though we perfectly “died to sin” (Romans 6:1) through Jesus’ sacrifice through our baptism, sadly, we rejected that perfect hatred for sin when we lacked contrition for our first sin. Therefore, if we want to accept that perfect hatred for sin again, we must still must become “dead to sin” ourselves… and kill all desire for any sin (at least as much as it is possible for ourselves), so we can desire God alone and be saved by Him. We can’t “live in it [want our sins]” (Romans 6:1) and think we are going to embrace saving mercy and Live.
Oh, please don’t say, “I don’t desire any sin.” That simply isn’t true. From the fall of Adam and Eve, we are all greatly inclined to sin, which causes us to desire many, many sins. If we haven’t spent our lives seeking Mercy to kill that desire and have succeeded in our efforts, we ALL desire sin. If we don’t think we desire sin, our pride has us believing a lie. We don’t know the truth about ourselves. We will need to learn how to become humble and honest with who we are (as explained later).
But sadly, from either being blinded to our sinfulness and not understanding the consequences of sin, we aren’t dying to sin (losing our desire for sin)… we are lucky if we have even a single thought about stopping just one of our sins, never mind have a mind set of striving with “[all] our hearts… to walk in ALL his ways, and to keep his [ALL of His] commandments (1 Kings 8:28)… so to amend all of our offences against Him.
Then, we live our lives never gaining true repentance, because, again, we can’t sincerely repent of any sin if we don’t even hate it enough to TRULY want to stop. We must “repent and turn to God [seek God to help us hate and stop the sin]” (Acts 26:20), if we wish for our sins to ever be forgiven.
No Amendment = No Contrition. We can’t just continue in our sins, “saying” we are sorry, but yet doing little to nothing at all to stop them. That isn’t true repentance. That is a desire for sin.
Sadly, like was said, most have a GREAT lack of repentance in our hearts upon our deaths, from our great neglect to seek Mercy to remove our great will to sin— from our neglect to seek Christ to save us.
“The souls in hell having been found at the moment of death with a WILL TO SIN [desire to sin], have with them an infinite degree of guilt [since one sin is infinitely offensive to Perfect Goodness]; and the punishment they suffer, though less than they deserve, is yet, so far as it exists, endless.”
–St. Catherine of Genoa, (The Treatise of Purgatory, Ch. 4)
So, again please honestly ask ourselves, what sins are we working hard to leave? Honestly, are there any?
Do we just spend our time with the world not caring about our sins, or are we going to church over and over again… thinking we are now “holy” from that act, causing our pride to blind us into ignoring our sins, proving we don’t even have the first degree of humility (knowledge of our sinfulness)?
Therefore, if we aren’t willing to see or leave any of our sins, we love that sin above God. Yes, the sins we are not really working to amend are killing us? Honestly, what sins do we put a half-hearted effort or no effort at all into stopping, and we just wind up continuing in them without continual change? Those are deadly.
“The first degree of knowledge [of our sinfulness/humility] brings about repentance–that is, sorrow–changing laughter into lamentation [loosing our false happiness (founded upon pride from thinking we are so “good”) and crying over our offences against God]… In its second degree knowledge brings about amendment, and as a result you no longer present your members to sin as instruments of wickedness, but you curb gluttony, throttle lust, put down pride and make the body that formerly served sin into a servant of holiness. Repentance without amendment gains nothing…
–St. Bernard of Clairvaux, Doctor of the Church (Sermon on Christmas Eve)
Our Words are Meaningless?
So many faiths tell us we need to repent to be saved, but they have been deceived into believing just “saying” we are sorry or asking for forgiveness is enough. But I tell you, our words are MEANINGLESS if our actions don’t live the hatred for sin—the sorrow–we claim we have.
We can do endless good works, pray the most pious prayers and have a great apperance of being “holy”, thinking we are “following” Christ by serving others and loving God, but our prayers and works will merit us NOTHING in the end if we are not living all the facets of true contrition, especially that of working hard to amend every sin or we will reject God for sin… and choose an eternity of torment.
Please know following Christ is much more than just praying and serving others… it is becoming perfect (without sin) just like Him. Please don’t be deceived.
“When he [John the Baptist] saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees [who had no desire to leave their sins] coming to his baptism [for the forgiveness of their sins], he said to them, “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come [and now you know you need forgiveness]?
[If you want to be forgiven and Live] produce good fruit [love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control… stop the sin] as evidence of your [true] repentance… every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit [leave sin and gain fruits of the Spirit] is cut down and thrown into the fire [from proving their lack of true repentance]” (Matthew 3:7–8).
Again, what sins are you not truly working hard to leave… those are damning you. Honestly, if we are to claim we are sorry–have any degree of sorrow outside of word alone–for our sins, we must be progressively leaving them and growing in fruits of the spirit–gaining qualities of Christ/losing sin… truly becoming like Jesus.
What ways are you not like Jesus? What are your rotten fruits? Are you allowing those rotten fruits to stay on your tree, or are you really ridding them from your life and truly bearing good fruit for the love of God?
This is a vital quality one has when we are correctly advancing towards obtaining a truly contrite heart. But even with having that quality–leaving sin and gaining virtue–we still very well might not have grown enough in our faith to have obtained TRUE contrition… since true contrition is much more than that.
Saved By Faith
If we think we are saved by faith, well that is true. “For by [God’s saving/forgiving] grace you have been saved through faith” (Ephesians 2:8). But if we think we have a faith that saves–a faith that can accept His free gift of saving forgiving grace–without having true sorrow for all of our sins, we are believing a lie from the deceiver. “Such faith has no power to save” (James 2:14).
If we want to be saved, to accept the forgiving saving mercy Christ suffered to give us–that we received at our baptism (for “you are now saved by a baptismal bath” 1 Peter 3:21) but REJECTED when we didn’t truly repent of our first sin, then we must grow in faith to obtain a mature SAVING FAITH, which is much more than just “saying” we are Christians.
“The beginning of grace-given Christian life is established in baptsim, but few people preserve this grace for long. Most Christians lose it [quickly]… We see that many people are more or less corrupted; they have principles which are not sound [not of Christ’s teaching]… Such people no longer have the true Christian life within themselves [no long have God’s saving mercy within them]; they must begin it anew… Judging from the multitude of those who fall into sin after baptism, one must say that repentance has become for us the ONLY source of true Christian life.”
–St. Theophan the Recluse (Turning the Heart to God, Ch. 1)
Truly, we must begin anew and learn the true faith, so we can GROW if faith correctly “until we all attain… to mature manhood [a saving faith]” (Ephesians 4:13) and can truly repent of our sins.
Yes, the disciples are “warning everyone and teaching everyone in all wisdom, so that [at judgement] we may present [ourselves and] everyone MATURE in Christ” (Colossians 1:28) for the salvation of our souls. The disciples want to save us. But we aren’t hearing them. It is as if we are looking for any excuse to remain in our sins and still be saved. Oh, how much we love our sins.
We have been so deceived. We aren’t seeking to become “mature in Christ.” We don’t even know we need a saving faith or we will reject Heaven for Hell. We think we are faithful enough, but reality is, we are perishing. “The world is on the road to perdition [Hell]” as St. Padrie Pio warns us in his letter to the Seers of Garabandal in 1962. Please don’t die as one of them. May God’s grace now move us to Life.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son [to redeem us from our sins], so that everyone who believes in him [with a saving faith] might not perish but might have eternal life” (John 3:16).
We Must GROW into a Saving Faith
Truly, we can’t just “say” we believe… stating we are Christians and think we are automatically saved without seeking Our Savior for mercy (grace) to help us grow into a saving faith, which is a faith that isn’t attached to any sin, since it has grown into true hatred/true sorrow for them all.
The Word is warning us of our need to be “mature in Christ” not only because it is needed for salvation, but also because it is incredibly hard to obtain. Yes, it is very hard to sincerely come to hate what we have spent our life-time loving (sin).
Every hour of our lives is meant to help us obtain that goal, but are we using our hours wisely? There are so few of them and then our eternity begins. But from being darkened to the truth, our hours are wasted away seeking everything but salvation.
“Lord, let me know my end, and what is the measure of my days; let me know how fleeting my life is!” (Psalm 39:4).
Please know, due to our great inclination to sin, from the fall of Adam and Eve, “the path leading to Heaven is so narrow and so rough, so over grown, so dark and difficult to discern [since we can’t see what is causing us to reject God], that there are many who never find it their whole life long.” as St. Jerome, Doctor of the Church, warns us in his commentary on Matthew.
Yes, sadly, many stay so deceived that we never even find “the path to Life” (Proverbs 15:24): the road of self-denial, denying ourselves of the worldly things and the sins that we want thinking they will bring us happiness, in which we walk with Jesus on to purify our souls. Remember, “the gate is narrow and the road is HARD that leads to life, and there are FEW who find it” (Matthew 7:14).
Yes, the road to Life is the one of self-denial: surrendering what we love–sin, our will and worldly pleasures (as explained later)–for God. But are we really working HARD to find and then walk on the path of Life… to detach from the world so to be with the few? Or have we been deceived into thinking we are already saved by doing nothing, from being darkened into not understanding Scripture?
“Everyone who believes in him [with a saving faith] will receive forgiveness of sins through his name” (Acts 10:43).
Yes, we need a saving faith. But, from the devil deceiving us as to what is needed for salvation, the whole purpose of our lives–to grow in faith to obtain a saving faith, “mature manhood” (Ephesians 4:13), so to be with Jesus for eternity–is lost. We should be working hard for this goal, since “every athlete exercises discipline in every way. They do it to win a perishable crown, but we [those who are seeking a saving faith, discipline ourselves in everyway to win] an imperishable one [Eternal Life]” (1 Corinthians 9:25).
Yet, who of us is working like an athlete, disciplining ourselves, denying ourselves of what we want, so God can change us and give us a saving faith? Is there anyone sincerely training like an Olympian for Eternal Life? It is hard work to come to hate what we love. If so, what are we doing? If not, then do we think we are just going to ask God for mercy and bam we are saved? That is the deceiver tricking you.
“They want to continue sinning until the end, saying: ‘If we say at the end, just once, “God, have mercy on me!” God’s mercy is so great that he will pardon us.’ This is not virtue [something good], wanting to sin without making amends, wanting to get the prize [Eternal Life] without having to struggle for it… a greater punishment [in Hell] is due to them than to others…
They are worse than Judas, for Judas after he had betrayed the Lord, recognized that he had sinned gravely… These people recognize their sin and yet they persevere in it with no compunction [no feeling of guilt] about it in their hearts. [They have no sorrow for their sins].”
–Mother of God to St. Bridget of Sweden (Revelations, Book 1, Ch. 37)
True Repentance Saves — Insincere Repentance Damns
Yes, Christ came to instill in us that it is by “repentance, for the forgiveness of sins [that we would be saved, which] would be preached in his name” (Luke 24:46). Yes, repentance is how we accept God’s forgiving mercy.I have… come to call the… sinners to repentance” (Luke 5:32).
Sadly, from following people, who mean well, but don’t realize it themselves that they have been tricked by the devil into becoming “false teachers” (2 Peter 2:1), we have lost care for our sins and in a big way. I mean, sure we don’t like them, but we are far from being truly contrite (truly sorry) for them.
Either we think since we are under God’s grace, we can sin and there are no consequences, or we think to be saved/forgiven we only have to declare some kind of sorrow with our thoughts or words. Yet, as a result of being deceived into believing “the father of lies” (John 8:44) and not the the saints, who have actually obtained Heaven and are “a model for you, so that you might imitate [them]” (2 Thessalonians 3:9), we simply haven’t learned correctly nor sought Jesus to help us advance properly in our faith. We haven’t grown into a saving contrition.
From having such little care for our sins, we are lucky if we have even the smallest amount of real contrition, never mind a true repentance for all of our offences, which is even more than just wanting to stop our sins. To learn more please read, “What is True Sorrow?”
Oh, “how rare such [true] repentance is. Alas, it is as scarce as a good confession.” as St. John Vianney, warns a congregation on Passion Sunday in his sermon on repentance (Sermons of the Cure d’ Ars). Yes, sadly, how rare it is to find a soul with a saving contrition. Our contritions are far from true.
“Even through His yoke [command] is easy and His burden [cross] light, there are FEW who wish to receive Him and be saved through Him [sadly, most choose our sins instead].”
–St. Francis of Assisi, (Letter to All the Faithful)
But even with the saint’s vast warnings, which have echoed through the Church for years, we simply aren’t hearing them and still have no concern for our or others salvation. We have allowed the devil to blind us.
What is a Saving Contrition?
From our pride allowing us to become deceived, we have lost a desire to seek a saving contrition. Frankly, we don’t even know what it is. Most think it doesn’t matter if we sin… we think that God’s mercy is so great He will forgive us no matter what, so we have no desire to seek Mercy to help grow in faith into true sorrow for our life time of offences against Him, and we remain attached to them unto death. Tragic!
“Thy death will not save me, if I do not on my part detest every evil [sin] 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.)
We must come to learn what a saving contrition is and seek God daily to give us such saving faith. But please know, if we haven’t even been concerned with the fact that we have been offending God, we are FAR from being truly contrite for our offences against Him and must grow much in faith.
A saving contrition is when we have a “[truly] contrite heart and humble spirit” (Daniel 3:39):
- HUMBLE SPIRIT– being humble enough to look for and see our sins/our sinfulness. It is when we don’t hide our sins (Proverbs 28:13), nor convince ourselves or others we aren’t sinning (1 John 1:8), nor lie to ourselves, pretending to be someone we aren’t (Matthew 7:5), along with possessing a desire to admit our guilt: confess our sins (1 John 1:9);
- CONTRITE HEART– hating our sins enough (no longer desiring our sins/have died to sin) to where we are truly resolved to sin no more (John 8:11), which causes us to want to avoid all that leads us to sin (Matthew 5:30), to make and keep resolutions to amend our sins/to discipline ourselves (1 Corinthians 9:27), to suffer anything rather than commit the slightest offence against God (Hebrews 12:4), to progressively leave our sins and continuously grow in virtue (2 Peter 1:1-9), to make right our wrongs (Numbers 5:5-8), and to live a life of penance (Colossians 1:24)….
and all of this is done, not only because we don’t want to suffer in Hell from our unrepentant sins (Luke 13:5), known as servile fear/imperfect contrition, but when we have finally grown into a saving contrition, we do all of the above mostly because we can’t bear to offend God, whom we seek to perfectly love with our whole heart (Mark 12:30), known as filial fear/perfect/true contrition (a saving contrition).
Honestly, how can we sincerely tell God we are sorry for any sin, if we won’t do any one of those acts of contrition? We can’t. Can we honestly say, “Lord, I’m sorry for my sins, but I won’t do anything to try to make up for the wrong I have done (have acts of penance)?” No; of course not. Can we honestly say, “Lord, I’m sorry for my sins, but I won’t even avoid what is causing me to sin?” No; that would be ridiculous.
“A [truly] contrite, humbled heart, O God, you will not scorn.” (Psalm 51:19).
Therefore, let’s no longer allow the devil to make us liars deceiving ourselves right to our doom. Not seeking to follow/obey any ONE of those commands of God–acts of contrition–is proof of our lack of TRUE contrition… our lack of true love for God. And boy does it take much help from God–much grace from Our Savior–to obtain this kind of sorrow for all of our sins. There is no time to waste. We must seek Jesus to save us today.
Humanity is Doing Nothing for Jesus to Save Us?
Sadly, for practically the whole of humanity right now, since we live in a time when “[the earth is] plunged into [spiritual] darkness” (Revelations 16:10), we are doing nothing to obtain a saving faith. Oh, we have so many other goals and aspirations in life that we work towards, but not this one.
Growing into true contrition/true repentance/true hatred for our sins/true love for God is the most important goal in one’s life, but we have been blinded away from seeking it. Yet, if we don’t obtain Eternal Life, what does anything else matter?
“What profit would there be for one to gain the whole world and forfeit his [eternal] life?” (Matthew 16:26).
I tell you, “many deceivers have gone out into the world” (2 John 1:7), and we are now so confused as to The Way, so much so, that we aren’t even seeking Jesus to save us. We might seek a better job, or more money, or greater accomplishments, or more friends, or someone to love us. Maybe we seek better material things or perhaps more fun or relaxation or a great time with our family or a life of peace or even to grow in faith. But we aren’t seeking to grow into a SAVING faith… true contrition for our sins so we can detach from them and attach to Our Savior. We just continue in our sins ignoring their consequences. To learn more please read, “What Are the Requirements of Salvation?”
Sadly, we have been deceived into believing we are already saved. Now “countless people…[are] in awful peril and very few of them ever reach their proper haven [Heaven]” as St. Ambrose was explaining to St. Bridget (Revelations Ch.5).
“[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 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)
Therefore, to escape this danger, we must seek Our Savior, make a true commitment to change, and work hard to “grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and savior Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 3:18), so through our free will and His grace, we can “grow up to salvation” (1 Peter 2:2).
Then we will believe in Christ not just with some faith, but we will advance into maturity… into a SAVING FAITH… a faith that has come to truly hate to offend God–will do and suffer anything so to not offend Him in the slightest way– a faith that has grown to truly love Him above our sins… every sin, so we can come to truly repent of all of our offences and accept His saving redeeming grace He died to give us.
Oh, we don’t want to die with unrepentant sin. Eternity is forever!
“A great number of Christian adults are damned… those who are damned are damned by their own [unrepentant] malice.”
–St. Leonard of Port Maurice (Homily on the Fewness of the Saved)
We Must Teach the Truth
Yes, we need Our Savior to save us–to help us advance in faith, with the goal of becoming perfectly “mature”–until we become truly “humble and contrite in spirit” (Isaiah 66:2), and no longer desire to commit any of our sins (aren’t attached to any sin), so to obtain true contrition, for the salvation of our souls and one day offend God no more. Then we can go out and save souls too.
Please know, “A great many persons live constantly in the state of damnation [but don’t even know it]!”as St. Vincent De Paul has warned us (Voice of the Saints). The world needs to hear the words of Truth so we can seek Mercy to help change our lives. We don’t want all of God’s children to die. But tragically, the deceiver has confused us so greatly that not only are we ignoring The Truth, we are not warning God’s children of their impending doom if we don’t change either.
“I can not rest, but must needs [to] run and shout a warning to them… Neither can I understand why other priests… do not preach or exhort their flock so that they might avoid this unbearable eternity of Hell.
It is still a source of wonder to me how the laity–those men and women blessed with the Faith–do not give warning [what kind of faith do they really have?]…. why should there not be a warning of the eternal fire to waken those who are drifting in the sleep of sin [to their eternal doom]…”
–St. Anthony Mary Claret, (Autobiography, Ch. 2)
Horribly, we don’t even have the faith to save souls. We might think we are saving souls by our good works, but we save souls by doing all so others can grow into a saving faith, and because we are in such great darkness, that greatly entails preaching THE TRUTH. Yet, as we know, The Truth is no longer being taught and the fear of damnation–the consequences of sin–is no longer being preached either.
The motivation we need to do what is necessary to change is not uttered. The devil has us. We are now being misguided right to our doom, because “the god of this age [our idols] has blinded [our minds] so that they [we] may not see [or preach] the light of the gospel” (2 Corinthians 4:4).
Yes, we aren’t being taught how to save our souls nor are we being warned of what will happen if we don’t change, because we can’t see “the light of the gospel”, since our IDOLS (everything we seek for happiness that isn’t God) has caused us to go become blind, as we desire them and not God, as explained later. As a result, we don’t know we MUST grow in faith or we will all perish.
Because of our sinfulness and neglecting to save souls by not teaching them The Way, upon our deaths, the majority of God’s children wind up unknowingly rejecting God and choosing “Hades… being tormented [forever]” (Luke 16:23)… receiving the “eternal punishment” (Matthew 25:46) for their vast unrepentant sins. It is absolutely tragic!
“Whoever brings back a sinner from the error of his way will save his soul from death” (James 5:20).
But we must know, this–lack of understanding of our need for true contrition (a saving faith) for salvation–isn’t the only truth we have been darkened in understanding with. Tragically, we have been so greatly deceived, we practically have to re-learn the entire faith… since the devil–“the antichrist” (1 John 2:22)–has infiltrated it all, as explained later. Please don’t be deceived! God wants you in Heaven.
It is Time to Gain Some Humility
Without gaining humility there is no hope for us. Like was said, with in all of us, unless Christ has removed our desire for sin, there are many sins we don’t want to leave (the sins we love). Some of us are humble enough to admit this truth and others simply can’t.
Many of God’s faithful, suffer from this great pride. The devil wants to take God’s “faithful” and make them into proud and blind souls. ” “. This is what has happened to God’s Church, as explained later. It is full of proud blind people, who don’t know our true sinfulness and are far from a saving humility… which is why we have fallen into this time of great darkness. Our pride has deceived us.
“Pride goes before disaster” (Proverbs 16:18).
The pride of ours has such horrible consequences. It rejects grace… some or all of it and make us so confused to The Way. Yet, we must know, all of these Rosaries and prayers we pray, full of pride–presuming we are saved from having no fear of sin (no real contrition for our sins)–having no fear of the Lord–won’t help us at all. Please don’t be deceived. Proud prayers and works, no matter how many billions we have performed, only end in doom.
To obtain a saving faith, we need to be at least humble enough to know we are great sinners who need to repent… and know we need Our Savior to save us (to give us a saving faith). We can’t seek God to save us, if we think we are already saved. But horribly, some of us, have been deceived through our pride into thinking we are so “faithful”, because of our vast knowledge, prayers and/or works, that now we don’t even realize how sinful we really are.
Then we live our lives with self-righteous blinders on. And we, and probably everyone around us thinks we are holy and saved because of what we do. But please remember, we are “not [saved] because of any righteous deeds we had done but because of his mercy” (Titus 3:5). And this mercy, that saves, is embraced/accepted when we have true contrition in our hearts for every one of our sins. So, please don’t lie to ourselves and pretend like we are striving to stop all of our sins when we really aren’t… that lie will kill us.
But after we are humbled, come to see our great sinfulness and grow in understanding of the consequences of sin (gain fear of the Lord), then our sorrow for our sins should grow too. If we accept enough of God’s grace, we will gain a desire to change and work hard to avoid and amend some of our sins, and with each sin we amend, if we stay humble, we will grow in faith (hatred for our sins) until we eventually live all of the above facets of true contrition (live the acts of contrition) for all of our offences against God and obtain a saving faith.
But as we know, from being deceived, we aren’t doing this. We don’t hate our sins enough. Many say, “Just confess your sins… God is merciful. He will forgive you.” As if merely “saying” our sins is going to allow us to accept God’s forgiveness.
Of course, God wants us to confess our sins, like the Psalmist teaches us. “I have acknowledged my sins; my guilt I did not hide” (Psalm 32), since refusing to admit our guilt is obvious proof of our great pride. Because when we are more concerned with what another might think… when we don’t want to admit our wrongs so we can pretend like we are someone we aren’t that is great evidence of our lack of humility and lack of contrition.
“Pride keeps it [our soul] in darkness. The soul neither knows how, nor is it willing, to probe with precision the depths of its own misery [sinfulness]. It puts on a mask and avoids everything that might bring it recovery.”
–St. Faustina (Diary, #113)
Therefore, to accept God’s forgiving saving mercy, we must grow in faith to humbly confess our sins with true sorrow–which causes us to turn from our sins—or the wrath of God (the consequences of our sins) will still remain upon us.
“When God saw BY THEIR ACTIONS how they turned from their evil way, he repented of the evil [punishment] that he had threatened to do to them.” (Jonah 3:10)
Where is Our Concern for Salvation?
Today, the flock is so oblivious as to what awaits us if we don’t change, it is terrifying. Tragically, for most of us, we are so darkened to The Way, we are utterly clueless we are walking to our doom. Unless we become vastly enlightened to the truth and greatly change, we are still going to receive the horrific punishment that is due to us for our sins, since we are rejecting God’s healing mercy that was meant to take away our punishment for our sins.
Yes, unless we work hard to change and become one of the “few” who embrace God’s forgiving mercy for all of our sins, this punishment of being “tormented day and night forever and ever” (Revelation 20:10) in Hell—will be our reality.
“It is certain that hell is a pit of fire, in which the miserable souls of the…[damned] will be tormented forever… [the damned] will be forever dying, and yet never, never die.”
–St. Alphonsus, Doctor of the Church, (The Way of Salvation and Perfection, Med. 26)
Truly, if we don’t wake up and repent and change, our eternal suffering will be great.
We simply must gain a concern for our salvation which drives us to work as hard as we can to leave all of our evil ways, so to love God. We must be “turning from the sins [we commit]” (Ezequel 18:21) or we won’t ever reach a saving faith (true hatred/true contrition).
This is why the world is a mess. We say we are Christians, but we think very little of our sins. We aren’t looking for our sins, nor are we sincerely working hard to leave them. We are neglecting bounds of laws of God. We think nothing of offending God with countless offences.
We think since Christ came into the world, it doesn’t matter if we sin… that His mercy will forgive us no matter what we do, contrition or not. Oh, we have been deceived. Most are concerned about everything else in life, but our sins. We have little to no real contrition for endless offences against God and are rejecting Mercy for sin… but think nothing of it.
I know, some of us might have had some thoughts of wanting to leave some of our sins, and we might have even tried half-heartedly for a moment, but at the next opportunity, we fail just as before. Please know, that isn’t true contrition.
“He is a scoffer, not a penitent [not someone sorry for his sins], who [easily] commits what he repented of. Nor is he cleansed [forgiven] who weeps for his sins, yet does not forsake them [leave them].”
— St. Isadore of Seville, Doctor of the Church (De Summo Beno ii)
Therefore, we should greatly fear eternal damnation and do something to change or we will choose to be “thrown into the fire, and burned” (John 15:6) for eternity… for rejecting God’s healing saving mercy for sin. Yes, “fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell” (Matthew 10:28). We must change!
Abomination of Love
From living in darkness, we don’t know how to love God anymore… not with true or perfect love. Frankly, we don’t know how to love anyone–not how Jesus loved us (as explained later), so we don’t even have the correct goal to aim for. We only know how to love ourselves and others with a false or one of the worldly loves… which are far from true or perfect love. To learn more please read, “How to Perfectly Love God?”
But the basic essence–the foundation–of love is quite simple. How do we love God?–by NOT OFFENDING HIM.
“Whoever loves me will keep my word” (John 14:23).
Please understand every time we sin, we aren’t loving God; we are offending Him. That isn’t how we love anyone. Yet, “love of God [to offend Him no more] is the highest objective toward which one can strive in this life” as St. Peter Damian taught on his “Teachings on the Spiritual Life” (Ch.5), but are we even seeking this?
We might think we are loving God because we feel some love for Him. Or perhaps we feel we are loving God by all of our prayers and works, but are we really? Oh, we can do good deeds and pray a million prayers… we can preach and heel… thinking we are loving Him, but if we aren’t working hard stop all of our sins–to perfectly keep God’s Word–those prayers and works are meaningless. They are done from hearts that have been so deceived, we have lost sight of how we truly love God.
“Whoever has my commandments and OBSERVES THEM is the one who loves me” (John 14:21).
Again, it is an abomination of love to not care that we are offending God with any sin? That isn’t how someone feels who has a saving faith–true love for God. How horrible is that! But for many of us, we aren’t even concerned with the fact that we are offending God–not loving Him–because of our sins.
We think mercy will forgive us, so our sins don’t really matter all that much. Perhaps we recognize that our sins harm our lives on earth, but we have been darkened so greatly that we don’t even find it concerning that our sins OFFEND GOD–that we aren’t loving Him–with every sin we commit!
Oh, from the deceiver blinding us, our hatred for sin and love for God is so little that we don’t really care that we are offending Our Beloved Lord, since we hardly do anything to avoid sinning?
“Let love be genuine; hate what is evil [sin]” (Romans 12:9).
We Habitually Don’t Love God
How can we honestly say we hate sin and love God, if without restraint, we repeatedly commit any sin against Him… when His mercy–all the strength in the world–is waiting to help us amend them? What kind of love is that? Can we sincerely tell anyone we love them, if we beat them and beat them and don’t even try to stop? Of course not. Yet, this is what we are doing with endless sins to God, who loves us so tenderly.
God loves us more than we could ever fathom… like with our gift of eternal life. Please know, since there was no way to pay the price for our sinfulness that God’s divine justice demanded, since one sin’s consequence is so great and unable to be repaired by someone tainted with sin, “for God so loved the world [us] that [through His mercy] he gave his only Son” (John 3:16) to be the unblemished Lamb, (to make the sacrifice) to take the punishment we deserve to save us from Hell.
But what do we do in return for such great love shown to us, deplorably, we habitually without restraint don’t love Our Lord–we offend Him–and we just don’t care enough to work hard to stop, which causes us to reject that “immeasurably generous [gift]” (Ephesians 1:7), for sin.
To obtain Life we must LOVE GOD enough to be grief stricken over offending Him, which causes us to resist temptation and grow in goodness (never stopping) towards becoming like Our Savior.
“To reach the Promised Land you must weep with grief at the thought of the sins you have committed. Further, you must resist temptations to evil, and you must ‘advance from virtue to virtue ‘ (Psalm 83).”
–St. Bonaventure (Holiness of Life, Ch. 1)
I know, for many of us, we can see how God has changed us and filled us with His love. We can see how Jesus, His Mother, the angels and the saints are trying to help us (if we seek their assistance and sometimes even when we don’t). We feel their love and we recognize ourselves growing closer to them as they love us, but what do we do in return for such love shown to us, we still don’t desire to love God in return. We habitually offend Him since we aren’t sincerely wanting to stop.
Tragically, we are content with the love we feel and the few sins we have left, thinking since we have change some of our ways, we are now “faithful.” When we aren’t even striving to love God… we aren’t even working as hard as we can to stop ALL of our offences against Him… to sincerely become saints. Yes, a saint: someone who wants to give their life to strive to perfectly love God, who sincerely never wants to offend Him again, who has grown into perfect contrition and atoned for their sins, so they are pure enough to enter into Heaven… for “everyone who has this [real] hope based on him [for eternal life] makes himself PURE” (1 John 3:3).
We Must Strive to Perfectly Love God
Sadly, from being so deceived, we aren’t striving to perfectly love God, to become perfectly pure. Horribly, we pay so little attention to our sins. We are ok with being defiled and causing insurmountable pain to God’s Most Sacred Heart of Love.
“How often they rebelled against God… [and] grieved him” (Psalm 78:40).
Yet, we make all sorts of claims of love for God, but our actions–our lack of sincere effort to stop our sins, proves we are lying to ourselves and God. Truly, how can we claim, with any sincerity of heart, that we love God–if we aren’t even working as hard as we can to “STOP SINNING” (1 Corinthians 15:34)… to perfectly surrender our will for God’s… to perfectly keep His Commandments… His Word… ALL of His Word… so we can love Him? We can’t.
Sure, we might have changed some of our life, but we are still FAR from perfect saints and from the devil deceiving us into thinking we are already saved or that we are now “faithful” since we have made some improvements in our life, we have become complacent with the rest of the sins that are keeping us from sanctity, and they are killing us.
Horribly, we habitually continue in many of our sins without concern. Oh, we have been deceived! Our desire to amend simply isn’t true; we can’t obtain a state of grace.
“Habitual sin binds down the mind [with its desire for sin], so that it cannot rise to uprightness [it can not gain a state of grace].
–St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church, (Catena Aurea, 13:10-17)
Yes, our desire for sin prevents us from “uprightness, and seek[ing] him with sincerity of heart” (Wisdom 1:1), since we have no fear of sinning… we have no “fear of the Lord [which] is [the] hatred of evil [sin]” (Proverbs 8:13). Then we seek God with proud hearts… not humbly seeking Him to purify us so we can perfectly love Him. But seeking to gain what our selfish desires want.
“He who walks in uprightness [with a saving faith] fears the Lord” (Proverbs 14:2).
We Grow in Greater Pride Because of God’s Unfathomable Love
How many of us, from experiencing God’s love for us, have been deceived into thinking that proves our righteousness? But please don’t be deceived. God loves the just and the unjust alike.
“He makes his sun rise on the bad and the good, and causes rain to fall on the just and the unjust” (Matthew 5:45).
What parent who has a child, who is always doing wrong, doesn’t still help them if the request assistance or take away his gifts if they do wrong (unless that is what is good)? All good parents overlook their children’s imperfections and love them anyway. And God does the same for us miserable sinners too.
We can be greatly deceived and horribly sinning, but if we seek God, He will still bless and help us anyway. That is NO PROOF OF RIGHTEIOUNESS. That is proof of God’s love for us. I know this can be hard to accept if we have been so sure we know The Way and are serving God and living the faith correctly. But this is true and only the truth will save.
Sure, much of the time, if we lose feeling God’s love, that is a direct result of our sinfulness (but not always). But regardless, experiencing God’s great love for us is only proof of His love for us. We must accept this humbling truth if we want to have any real hope for Life.
Frankly, it is very dangerous to associate any consolations, healings or anything from God as given to us or coming forth from us through our prayers, because we are of great faith. That leads only to self-righteousness, blindness and death.
From God’s great love for us, even though we don’t really love Him nor fear sinning against Him (at least, not for the right reasons), He still tries and tries to help us grow in faith no matter how broken our faith is. That is why we experience so much of His love as He heals and helps us… and give us unique talents. It isn’t because we are so “faithful” and deserve His love… it is because He loves us.
But for most of us, when we experience God’s unfathomable love: His help, gifts, improvement in our lives, that causes us to boast of our “goodness” and our pride becomes so great that, we think we are some blessed righteousness soul because we are experiencing His love. Then we never even come to know the truth about ourselves (our great sinfulness) which results in us not finding the path to Life… The Way to Heaven. Tragic!
Yet, quite the opposite feelings are produced, when the humble experience God’s love, His closeness, His healings… When the humble see God giving them healings, talents, increasing their knowledge, or prayers or works, etc. they become so enlightened to God’s goodness and to their undeserving misery, they feel overwhelmed with unworthiness of how He would show such favors on someone so wretched… so underserving, that their understanding of His mercy and their unworthiness grows and grows… They feel even less “good” about themselves (humble) than before. Yes, when the humble experience God’s love they become more humble (obtain greater hatred of their sinful self and greater love and gratitude for God)
But when the proud experience God’s love, when He envelopes them with is peace, strength, talents, healings, they feel “holy” and priveledged. Instead of growing in greater hatred of their sinful self, they grow in greater pride… wanting more and more from God (to love themselves) and continue to live horribly deceived. Thinking they must be someone great, when they are far from it. And the longer this continues, the deeper in habitual practices of pride they will acquire, and the more blind they will become… as what is truth becomes disfigured.
And this is why we are in the time of darkness… OUR PRIDES have grown out of control and are deceiving us. Now we don’t know The Way. We see bad as good. But of course we won’t see everything distorted, but it isn’t the truth that we do know that will kill us, but all wrong we are justifying as right that will. Yet, from this great deception that lives in us, we will think we are saved and doing well. When, from our lack of true love for God–OUR LACK OF FAITH: our unwillingness to leave sin for God–we are rejecting the gift of salvation He died to give us.
If we don’t notice this poison–our pride inflating–and do all we can to rid it, we will become nothing but a mass of pride, doing religious things, living the life of a seemingly faithful person, but being far from it–finding our happiness in ourselves (idolizing ourselves) instead of finding our happiness in loving God (by not offending Him/doing His will), but not even realize it.
“Pride [is acquired by]… human praise… [the greatly prideful] uses all of his will to have a reason to be proud and win praise of men… he does, all his time and all his thoughts and all his strength so that he may fulfill his pride [but from his sickness is clueless to this aliment]… [The] thought of how he may attain some honor [do something well, especially in front of others, to build up his self-esteem/self-glory] or something [so] he may feel worldly pride [feel good about himself, rules his thoughts].
–The Mother of God to St. Bridget of Sweden (Revelations Ch. 29)
Yes, tragically, the deceiver has us so greatly in his trap, we live to feel good about ourselves. We relish to get and give complements. Sadly, we don’t know how to find happiness or self-value without being immersed in the sin of pride. To learn more please read, “How to Find True Happiness.”
This pride has blinded us so greatly that now we don’t even know what faith is. Many think faith is believing Jesus is Lord or serving Him, and I mean sure that is part of faith, but please know, a saving faith is founded on LOVING GOD… striving with all of our heart to leave ALL sin–to surrender our will perfectly for His–so to not offend Him in the slightest way. For we know when we love Jesus, He can save us… change us and give us a saving faith! Then we can spend eternity with Him, which is all God desires.
“God’s will is to save us, and nothing pleases him more than our coming back to him with TRUE repentance. The heralds of truth and the ministers of divine grace have told us this from the beginning, repeating it in every age. Indeed, God’s desire for our salvation is the primary and preeminent sign of his infinite goodness.”
–St. Maximus the Confessor (Divine Office, 4th week of Lent pg. 304)
Yet, from experiencing God’s love, how many of us go off to serve God, but we don’t realize that we are doing works of mercy from deceived hearts, not knowing what real love is… thinking our works prove our love for God, and sure those with true faith have works, for “without works our faith is dead” (James 2:17), but our true love for God is really proven by our hatred for sin–love for God over our sins? “Let love be genuine; hate what is evil [sin]” (Romans 12:9).
Yes, the “Faithful” are Without a Saving Faith
Please know, even if we feel God’s love, even if He has changed our lives, even if He has given us purpose and meaning and now, we believe we live for Him and are hardly sinning, sadly, most still haven’t grown enough in our faith… not into a true SAVING FAITH and our unknown mortal sins are rejecting Him. This is the truth. Please don’t be deceived.
Truly, the saints aren’t lying. But I know this can be hard to believe, yet not only are those, who don’t even try to live the faith–who are committing what we see as grave sins–walking blindly to their doom, but horribly so many of us–who consider ourselves greatly faithful, who pray bounds of prayers and have great knowledge and gifts from God, who have even given their lives in a most beautiful way to serving Our Lord and others–have been greatly deceived into thinking we are saved… that we have a saving faith–TRUE belief in Christ/true contrition for our sin–when we still don’t, but we just can’t see it. We are blind.
“That person is blind [doesn’t know his sins nor how to obtain Heaven] who has knowledge… He seems to have his eyes on God but he does not, [he has been deceived] for his eyes are on the world and he has turned his back to God.”
–Jesus to St. Bridget of Sweden, (Revelations, Ch. 14)
Yes, our knowledge and faith might seem great, but for most of us it just isn’t true (much deception lives in us). Sadly, because of our pride, we don’t know how to look at ourselves with eyes of truth. So, please be open to what the saints are teaching our reality is or we will never see and die. Truly, we must become honest with ourselves or we will blindly/proudly reject God for sin like so many have suffered before us.
I know we want be good people and do the right thing. We “believe” in Jesus and think we are saved. But the saints are telling us that we have been greatly deceived, and the faith we think we have simply isn’t enough to be true. It won’t save us.
“The pride of your heart has deceived you.” –St. Ambrose, (Obadiah 1)
Therefore, after our entire lives of being a “Christian” with all of our Masses and confessions attended, with all of our prayers and sacrifices made, and all of our countless hours of reading The Word and serving others… after all of the bounds of blessings (grace sent) from God, do we have such little hatred for our sins, that we still have a sin or many sins we are continuing in, since we aren’t seeking Mercy correctly to change us?
Where is our hatred for sin? Oh, the devil has tricked us into thinking attending church, praying a lot and doing good for others makes us “holy” and saved but remember, we aren’t saved by what we do. Our works don’t save.
Sure, all of the aforementioned pious things we do should help us to become, at least, someone who doesn’t want to offend God and wants to love Him… But that only occurs if we perform those pious acts with HUMBLE HEARTS, knowing our great sinfulness and need for mercy (help to change). That is the ONLY way any thought, word or deed we do for God or neighbor will have any benefit for our eternal life.
Therefore, if we can now see we are perishing, it is the time to “leave behind the basic teaching about Christ and advance to maturity” (Hebrews 6:1). Yes, we need to stop trying to gain more prayers and works… like the rest of the lost world who wants to be “holy” and start striving to gain humility (knowledge of our sinfulness, our weakness… our need for Mercy) and learn how to stop sinning… to humbly follow God’s will perfectly, so He can guide us to Life.
“The reason why Christ died for sins once for all… was that he might lead you to God.” (1 Peter 1:18).
But of course, please know, when we grow in faith properly, we will grow in prayers and works… without them our faith is dead, but that won’t be our goal. Our goal will be to humbly, perfectly love God. To OFFEND HIM NO MORE! To follow Him and His will alone. And to do this, we must train like an athlete or it simply won’t happen.
Oh, but beware! Even if now we want to change, the devil will still work tirelessly to deceive us, to keep us from obtaining a saving faith in Christ, all with the purpose of preventing us from sincerely repenting, so we won’t embrace God’s saving forgiving mercy for the salvation of our souls. But not to worry, this web-site and the saints are here to help lead us correctly to Jesus.
Our Priorities Are All Wrong
Oh, the world is all concerned about possibly getting sick and dying from COVID, but we have little to absolutely no concern at all with our eternal lives… with the scores of people, practically the whole of humanity, during this time of darkness, dying–perishing into Hell–since we lack true sorrow for our sins.
Oh, what kind of terrifying judgment and eternity awaits us.
“Oh, Hell! Oh, Hell! Mother of God have pity on those who do not amend their lives. If men only know what awaits them in eternity, they would do everything in their power to change their lives.”
–St. Jacinta of Fatima
What kind of love do we really have for our neighbor? Horribly, we were never told outside of The Word or by the saints that we need Christ to save us, so we can amend our lives and GROW in faith to, at least, at the moment of our deaths, obtain true contrition/true hatred for our life time of offences against God, so we DON’T PERISH INTO HELL.
“People must renounce sin and not persist in it, as has been done until now. It is essential to repent greatly!”
–The Mother of God to St. Jacinta of Fatima
Truly, from being blinded by the devil, since we fell into his trap, we live for everything but salvation. We don’t even realize if we don’t change, we are choosing Hell for eternity. We don’t know this, because the devil has made us terrified to speak about the real eternal consequences of unrepentant sin. This occurred because in the past, damnation was preached about, but instead of it moving us to Life, it moved us to despair, because it was preached without teaching of God’s mercy who wants to change and save us.
Now, the devil moved us to swing completely in the other direction removing all fear of Hell, tricking us into thinking Mercy will save us, even though we are rejecting Him from our unrepentant sin. Now, horribly, The Truth is omitted from our preaching, teaching and lives so much that we don’t understand it anymore.
Yet, without coming to understand this reality, we will never have a true desire to seek Mercy to change. This servile fear (fear of suffering from our sins) is the fear that will begin to move us. Please listen to what God the Father said, “They have arisen with servile fear from the vomit of mortal sin” as St. Catherine of Siena wrote in her Treatise of Discretion. This fear MUST be included in our preaching or we are to remain blind and damned.
“Remember then what you received and heard [The Truth]; obey it, and repent [with true contrition when you fail]. If you do not wake up [and amend your ways], I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come to you [and you will not be ready, from your unrepentant sin]” (Revelations 3:3).
Oh, the saints of the past have preached this truth, but sadly not anyone today. Today, we live in a time of darkness. “Complete darkness is in store for his treasured ones” (Job 20:26), which, if we now have been enlightened, we can see is occurring today.
Tragically, we don’t really know how to be saved, what repentance is nor how to acquire it anymore… nor do we really understand what happens when we don’t obtain it. The devil has made us blind and dumb. Yes, we don’t know we are dying and need Christ to save us, and we are perishing!
We Can’t Hate What We Refuse to See
Oh, how hard it is to truly hate sin, since we have been deceived so greatly that we have grown accustomed to many of our offences against God and have made them an acceptable part of our life. We think they are good.
“Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!” (Isaiah 5:20).
Yes, it is unfathomable hard to honestly look into the intentions of our hearts and to see what we have refused to acknowledge.
But even though we are greatly under the spell of the evil one–since we have fallen into “his schemes” (2 Corinthians 2:11)— I’m sure some of us can see some of the sins we don’t truly hate and habitually commit, because we know we aren’t sincerely resolved to stop them. But believe it or not, that is only the very tip of our sins we love (lack true hatred for). We have MUCH to learn. Our sinfulness has darkened us to practically all of them.
Yes, MOST of our sins we actually refuse to see. This is true. Unless we have received a special grace from God or have toiled and toiled away seeking knowledge of the truth about ourselves, we simply can’t correctly see. We look at ourselves with distorted glasses.
The devil has made us fools and we either think bad is good or we overlook our sins all together, as if we never committed them. If I were to ask you what your sins are, you might realize a handful of them. But truly, I tell you, we have many many sins. It takes much grace and time, for most, to uncover the truth about ourselves–our sinfulness–since our pride has made us into someone we aren’t.
“How greatly man deceives himself.”
–God the Father to St. Catherine of Siena, (Treatise on Discretion)
Now please don’t be deceived; to be saved we don’t have to come to see all of our sins. Frankly, that isn’t possible; only God knows that. But pretending like the sins we can’t see don’t count is a lie from the deceiver too. They do count. We absolutely must come to truly hate every last one of them. But I tell you, we can’t hate a single sin that we refuse to even admit or see, and boy do we refuse to admit and see bounds of sins.
For many of us, coming to see our sins we have spent our life time hiding is VERY HARD to do… since we want to think of ourselves as “good”… with few errors. Even if someone were to directly tell us what we are doing wrong, because of our pride, many of us would simply refuse to admit the truth. This is because the devil has tricked us so greatly that now we hate the truth (The Truth).
“For everyone who does evil [bad things] hates the Light [because when he chooses to sin, he shows his hatred for good, and all that is good is of God–who is perfect goodness–The One who brings our sins to the light], and [if he loves his sins or his pride and doesn’t want to see or leave them, he] does not come to the Light [to see his sins], so that his deeds will not be exposed [because he doesn’t want to feel guilty nor for his pride to be crushed]” (John 3:20).
However, now is the time to run to The Light to uncover all we have hidden in the dark, so through our guilt (being humbled), we will want to leave them. This article is also hear to help us see.
But coming to see how we don’t really understand The Truth and are guilty of committing so many horrible sins is hard for some of us to take.
If we do happen to see a moment of truth (our sinfulness), for some of us our pride becomes so hurt, we can’t stand who we are and begin hating ourselves… living depressed lives of self-pity. This is because our happiness is founded not on loving God (wanting to see our sins so we can stop) but on loving ourselves.
But for others, when we see our weakness, to find happiness, we simply make our sins nothing, ignore and/or cover them… making them no big deal… focusing on all the good we do to boost our pride… never concerning ourselves with the fact that our sins aren’t loving God. Therefore, our happiness isn’t founded on leaving a sin (obeying God, doing His will) so we can love God… no. It is in ourselves–ignoring our bad so we can pretend like we are good.
This is especially a problem for those of us whom God has changed, and now we thrive off our pride of wanting to be a good person. Many people who are religious and those with no faith want to be “good” and our prides are greatly upset when we fail. But please don’t allow this to become an issue about our pride: being less than who we want to be.
We must accept ourselves for who we are… sinners, and make this about HOW WE AREN’T LOVING GOD, and what we can do to change. Therefore, please know, seeing our weaknesses isn’t supposed to depress us. That only occurs when our pride doesn’t accept who we are… sinners. Even with our imperfections (non-sinful mistakes we make), our pride can struggle with accepting anything we do that is less than perfect or less than what others do… and then jealousy (wishing we were someone we aren’t) brings us down.
Knowledge of our sinfulness or even of our imperfections is supposed to humble us and then excite us into seeing how we can change–to give us an opportunity to improve–so we can better love our neighbor (others) and God.
So, please don’t run from seeing our weaknesses, nor allow them to depress us when we do see them. Humbly accept ourselves for who we are. And please don’t confess our sins… looking to remove our feeling of guilt: to remove our sorrow for what we have done. God’s mercy doesn’t remove the fact that we haven’t loved Him. We still committed the sin and didn’t love God. We should feel guilty/sorry for offending God; we did.
But let’s accept who we are and forgive ourselves like God accepts and our weakness and forgives us when we are truly sorry for our sins. Then let’s allow that feeling of guilt move us to Life, because God wants us in Heaven. Let our guilt–our sorrow for doing wrong–move us to seek God’s most merciful love (help/grace), so we can advance to a saving faith and then to never offend God again–to perfectly LOVE HIM.
Let’s change from being embarrassed/humiliated (having sorrow from our pride) that we are less than who we want to be (driven from self-love)–into having a great guilt/sorrow for offending God, whom we can’t bear that we haven’t perfectly loved (sorrow driven from love of God).
Then humbly allow ourselves to reject the temptation to live in self-pity bashing ourselves for our sins and ACCEPT WHO WE ARE… sinners in great need of Mercy. Then with great trust in Our Lord’s mercy, who wants to love, forgive and change us no matter what we have done wrong, embrace that grace and live in peace as we allow God’s magnificent grace to take away our sins and move us towards the salvation of our souls… so we may never not love God again. Remember all God wants for us is our salvation… for even though our “sin increased, grace [for those with real sorrow] overflowed all the more” (Romans 5:20) for the conversion of our souls. Praise God for His mercy!
“We must celebrate and rejoice, because your brother was dead [didn’t have remorse for his sins] and has come to life again [wants to amend them]; he was lost [in darkness] and has been found [wants to seek the Light]” (Luke 15:32).
Therefore, seeing God’s love and forgiveness should cause us to want to love Him in return–to never want to offend Him again…. that is if our hearts aren’t focused on self-love: wanting His forgiveness to love ourselves, to make ourselves feel better, instead of seeking His mercy so we can work harder to love God.
So, if gaining a desire to lose our “practice of sinning” (1 John 3:9) isn’t the result of our confessions of guilt, if it doesn’t move us to do all we can to never sin again, and we just leave confession with our guilt removed (no longer feel badly for offending God/lost our sorrow for our sins)… then something is very wrong. We have allowed the devil to deceive us into loving ourselves and not God, which is more greatly explained later.
So, let’s come to know our sins, confess our sins and strive to leave our sins so to LOVE GOD… growing and growing in contrition for our sins, until it becomes perfect. Therefore, what ways do we show our hatred for good, by doing what is wrong, and even pretending it is right?
How about with our various acts of vanity? The makeup we wear, the hair we die, the tattoos we get, the exercising we do, the stylish clothes we wear, the “cool” car we drive, the diets we follow, etc.–to enhance our prideful appearance… Yes, all of those are done to love ourselves…. not God.
I’m speaking about all we do for vain glory (to feel better about ourselves)… perhaps we do things to appear younger, better looking, more successful, etc. Those are sins… sins that are leading us away from love of God into love of self.
“Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity [done to love ourselves and not God]” (Ecclesiastes 1:2).
“Oh, getting my nails painted isn’t sinful,” we tell ourselves, “God wants me happy.” Of course God wants us happy, but does He want us happy spending our time running to the world as our source of happiness (seeking idols, making them our happiness), living vain lives? Of course not. Remember, God wants Him to be our source of happiness. Isn’t He the only true source of happiness… not vanity? “Turn my eyes from looking at vanities [which are killing me]; give me life in your ways” (Psalm 119:37).
We are to follow Him… to become like Him “he had no form or majesty that we should look at him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him” (Isaiah 53:2).
Therefore, please know, it isn’t all those acts of vanity–doing/getting worldly things–which, in and of itself make them sinful, but it is why we do what we do. It is our seeking out those vain indulgences for happiness which is. Our minds must be set on loving and pleasing God… not ourselves (idolizing ourselves). All vanity and idols must be stripped from our lives. God alone is supposed to be all we desire for happiness? Wow… do we have a lot to change!
“‘You are my God. My happiness lies in you alone’ (v. 2)… the Psalmist radically rejects the temptation of idolatry [seeking happiness from the world].”
–Pope St. John Paul II, (General Audience, Wed., 28 July 2004)
Because of the deceiver confusing us as to what is sinful and what isn’t, most don’t even recognize these as sins. But even if we are enlightened to their malice against God, most don’t want to admit that we commit these common habitual sins… we want to remain in them.
Sadly, when many of us do come to see the truth, we prove we actually hate the truth (knowledge of our sinfulness), since we will come up with a million excuses as to why a sin isn’t sinful. It doesn’t matter what the sin is, if we love our pride or the sins and don’t want to admit or leave it, we will justify it as good. This is VERY common. Beware!
“Oh, I don’t get my nails painted because I seek it for happiness. I do it because I can’t work with ugly nails” like that is a valid excuse… or “I get my nails done,” we say “since my husband won’t like it if my nails aren’t maintained” as if we are doing it to obey him. I tell you, when we love our pride or any sin and refuse to see or leave it, we will search our minds for any justification we can find trying and trying to remove our guilt, so we can continue in the sin without remorse… since we love our pride or the sin so much more than admitting our guilt and leaving the sin to love God.
Yet, if we want to Live, we must become HONEST WITH OURSELVES and work hard to stop doing all the senseless worldly things we do to increase our pride (vanity/self-love)… I know, maybe, for some of us our appearance that we are concerned about, but our vanity is found in our love for the title we hold, the complements we receive, the success we have, or the friends we make? I tell you, how we build up ourselves–grow in greater pride–is found everywhere. We must beware.
“With humility have self-esteem [knowing and wanting to be nothing… so our self-value is founded on God who lives in and works through us]” (Ben Sira 10:28).
To obtain Life, we need to grow in humility and learn to be nothing… so God can be everything. Therefore, what are your acts of vanity? What do you do that isn’t to love God, but to build up yourself. For most of us, it isn’t just exterior vanities that we seek our for happiness… it is the interior vanities of power, priveledge, popularity, etc. that we crave too. But we just never knew we had them, since we never looked into WHY we like what we like. But whether we can see them or not, they are killing us.
We need to learn what our vanities are (how we build up our pride) so we can rid them from our lives so we can become humble (nothing but “dust”) as we “set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth” (Colossians 3:2), so we can truly make loving God as our source of happiness… not all of the pleasures of the world.
Don’t we know “the one who is self-indulgent… [is] dead” (1 Timothy 5:6)? Probably not, since we live in a time of darkness. The world has “lost its light… [and now delights in] idols made from gold, silver, bronze, stone, and wood, which cannot see or hear or walk” (Revelations 8:12; 9:20).
Yes, The Truth is far from the forefront of our conscience. It has been cast out by darkness. Now, we spend our lives indulging in endless things to bring us pleasure that have nothing to do with knowing, loving or serving God… thinking nothing of them. Oh, we no longer understand what is sinful and what isn’t. We don’t know The Way.
Yet, just one sin we see as no big deal or justify as not sinful, makes us reject God for that sin and chooses “the penalty of eternal ruin, separated from the presence of the Lord” (2 Thessalonians 1:9).
Yes, the devil has tricked us into believing many of our sins are not even sinful… so we will live guilt free, in denial, as we cover them, so we die without having true repentance. Therefore, we must seek Mercy to help us remove our passions for the world’s pleasures, so we can have a passion for loving Him.
“[Man is] blinded by passion [for things of the world/sin], which does not permit him to acknowledge his fault nor profit by the correction.”
–St. Alphonsus, Doctor of the Church, (Reflections useful for Bishops that then man govern well their churches; Ch. 2 #9)
We see this refusal to see our sins often when someone criticizes/corrects us. Instead of humbly looking into ourselves to see if we did wrong, apologizing and admitting our error, we become embarrassed, or angered or pretend like we didn’t really do it. Yikes! From our love of sin and pride we don’t want to admit or see our sins, which is damning our souls. We need to change this.
“Those who disregard discipline [ignore correction] hate themselves [from their pride, hate their weakness (who they really are) and don’t want to see their failures], but those who heed reproof [follow correction and want to know where they are going wrong] acquire understanding [accept themselves and others for who they/we are (sinners) and understand our need for Mercy… and have real hope for salvation].” (Proverbs 15:32).
So if we find ourselves becoming upset if someone points out what they think is a wrong doing of ours, then we know we still don’t really want to see. Our pride is still in control. Because when a soul really wants to see, they welcome criticism/correction, even if it is incorrect, hoping to see any wrong doing they have done since they truly want to stop all offences against God (especially what they can’t see).
Therefore, the truly humble see correction as an opportunity to hopefully see our wrongs doings we aren’t aware of, so we can repent and change. And others correction doesn’t anger, humiliate or depress then. They aren’t quick to run in to defend ourselves to prove they are right. And they don’t pretend like they did nothing wrong. No; the humble listen to see if God is speaking to them through another, so they can become enlightened and change, if that is God’s will.
“Do not reprove [correct] the arrogant, lest they hate you; reprove the wise [those who want to see their sins], and they will love you” (Proverbs 9:8).
So if we are mad at someone for correcting us, we know that is our pride, not grace, moving us.
However, for many of us, even if we want to see our sinfulness, our desire much of the time is only half-hearted, so we continue to remain blind, since we simply don’t want to see ourselves for who we really are. Our pride won’t allow us.
But for this to change, our pride must be crushed. Then we can grow in humility to come to see and admit our sins for the salvation of our souls! To learn more please read, “How Does Our Pride Kill Us.” If we don’t learn how to “bring to light what is hidden in darkness” (1 Corinthians 4:5), so we can truly repent, we will perish into Hell.
“No one who conceals transgressions will prosper, but one who confesses [with true sorrow] and forsakes them [gives them up] will obtain mercy” (Proverbs 28:13).
Therefore, if we ever want to come to see the sins we love, we must humbly seek Mercy to enlighten us to the offences we desire–to open our eyes so we may see all the sins we hide… that we don’t truly hate and lack true contrition for–so we can gain a real desire to follow Jesus to Heaven. Then one by one, if we keep on seeking God, He will enlighten us all the way to Life.
“’Lord, let our eyes be opened.’ Moved with pity, Jesus touched their eyes [physical and spiritual eyes]. Immediately they received their sight, and followed Him” (Matthew 20:33).
At first God will enlighten us well enough for us to begin to follow Him, like through reading this article. Then little by little, according to our desire and God’s will, we will be enlightened to more and more of the vast sins we desire/commit (gaining self-knowledge), so we can grow in greater and greater humility. From there, with a humble heart, we can seek God for the strength to remove our misery–our liking for sin–from our souls, so we can die to sin.
Nonetheless, whether we want to see our sins or not, reality is, we habitually commit bounds of offences from having a great desire/liking for them. We greatly need Jesus to save us... to open our eyes and remove our will to sin, so we can desire God alone and be saved. To learn more please read, “How Can I See My Sins?”
“There is no attaining to God without self-knowledge [knowledge of our sinfulness]; for from such knowledge alone come humility and the fear of God, which is the beginning of salvation [the beginning of growing towards a saving faith].”
–St. Bernard of Clairvaux, Doctor of the Church (His Last Work)
Can We HONESTLY Look at Ourselves?
Like was said, we don’t know how to honestly look at ourselves. Our lives have been so focused on ourselves… living selfish lives, and not focused on how we can love God… we have created ourselves into being a person so far from reality just to find happiness in the boosting of our self-esteem (self-love/pride). Now, we don’t know who we are, so we can’t seek Jesus with the humility needed to save us.
But if we want to obtain a saving faith, we can’t ignore what we are thinking, saying or doing… pretending like everything is good and pleasing to God. No, without much grace, most of our thoughts, words and actions are actually not pleasing to God and offend Him.
But not only are we not loving God with each sin we commit in our thoughts, words and actions, we are also accountable for every thought and action we make too and will be punished accordingly (as explained later) for our sins. “[I] will punish him severely [according to His deeds] and assign him a place with the hypocrites [in Hell], where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth” (Matthew 24:50). Therefore, to just ignore any sin would be a grave error. We must come to see our sins in our thoughts, words and actions, if we want to repent, love God and Live.
So in order come to truly love God, we need to first work hard to see our sins. Then we can gain some contrition for them, begin to amend them and hopefully, with the help of God’s grace, grow into true contrition for them.
Nonetheless, hopefully we saw some of the vanities that live within us. Then we can seek Mercy to help rid them. But, actually, one way easiest ways to see our misery/sin is to look at our obvious sinful responses to life’s challenges (our crosses):
when things don’t go as we desire or even might not go as we desire. Of course there are plenty of other sinful behaviors, but they can be harder to see. And for those of us, who were born with a more calm easy going personality, it will be much harder to begin to grow in humility (knowledge of our sinfulness) and amend our ways, but help for those people is discussed later. But if we struggle with any of these, more obvious sins, then now is the time to look into our thoughts and actions to recognize these sins, and then see WHY we chose them. So we can sincerely repent, seek Mercy, and make resolutions to start changing.
The Sin: I felt frustrated, which lead to impatience and complaining, when my child wasn’t doing as I desired and made me late to work, since I didn’t want what God allowed (a misbehaved child, nor to be late to work)–I wanted my will, because I didn’t want to bear those crosses of dealing with my misbehaved child and tardiness to work.
The Resolution: Pray for strength to carry any cross God allows. When my child doesn’t obey me and I begin to feel frustrated, I’m going to stop doing anything and seek God for help, so I can be patient with my child’s weakness (sinfulness) and content with whatever God wills… even if it harms me, knowing/trusting God intends to use that cross for my good.
This is the kind of examination and resolution we need to make with each sin we can see… so we can begin changing. Lifting Our Values has a book with examples of various sins and helpful resolutions we can read about to perhaps implement them in our lives to help guide us to Life.
But as we know, some of us can get so worked up over life not being the way we want that we are FAR from God’s peace. Some might not realize these behaviors are sins, but anything we exhibit that isn’t God’s peace, is driven by sin… from our lack of trust in what God allows, no matter how well intentioned we might be… it is us not accepting with trust what has occurred or might occur; it is us WANTING OUR WILL.
Now, there are a couple of exceptions to those behaviors with fear and anger, which make them not sinful. For example: fear is good when it help leads us away from evil. Fear is also good and a natural response to danger… like if we were to cross our path with a rattle snake. We should fear being bit. If we didn’t we would lack rational fear, but our fear shouldn’t drive us to extreme behaviors or anxieties, and if we do get bit even with our moderate/cautious behavior to avoid the snake, we would not fear what God has allowed as being bad, but we would be in peaceful trust knowing it is good: part of His plan for the salvation of our soul.
Also, I’m not saying we should never become angry at someone’s sin, for we should not be content with the sins of others, but justifiable anger isn’t derived from a lack of self-control, but from love for God and man to help guide the erroring to Life (if that is absolutely necessary)… but most of our anger is strictly from self-love, because we don’t want to tolerate or bear a cross: inconvenience, burden, suffer, having less, being less than another, being treated less than we want, etc.
Oh I tell you, everyone is all happy when everything goes our way, but when life tests us with crosses, we are a mess of sin. We don’t want what God allows, knowing it is meant for our good to help and teach us how to become like Jesus, so we can obtain a saving faith. No; we only want to do things our way. Don’t we know it is only by surrendering our will for God’s that we will obtain Life. We must learn how to TRUST IN HIM and everything He allows in our lives as truly leading to our good, IF we can learn and change from the cross.
“We know that all things work for good for those who love God [who want to stop sinning/can change]” (Romans 8:28).
Yet, even with authority, we won’t peacefully obey and surrender our will to do what is asked, unless we agree with it. If we think what is asked of us is wrong, we don’t obey. Our pride makes ourselves the leaders, the authority, the guides to Life.
We want our will and will even ignore the command, or fight the command or do it begrudgingly. Of course we don’t obey something that breaks God’s law of Love, or goes against His will, but with everything else, we simply must, even if (or I should say, especially if) we think we know a better way and they are wrong.
Now, if our arrogant defiance doesn’t change, how are we going to obey the parts of The Word we find challenging, or comply with God’s guidance in this article we don’t like or understand, or follow the saints hard path to Heaven. We must learn how to do what we don’t want or we will perish into Hell.
How far are we from acting like Christ, who “humbled himself and became obedient unto death, even death on a cross” (Philippians 2:8).?
Sometimes even with the smallest imperfections or inconveniences that God allows, we are now grumpy from that cross, which was meant to make us like Christ: patient, tolerant and understanding… wanting to suffer to send grace for the salvation of souls, as we “rejoice in my sufferings” (Colossians 1:24), as discussed later.
Oh, but the last thing we want to do is suffer, especially from someone else’s error or from obeying someone else’s command… We hate the cross of Christ. Oh, the devil has us! Yet, those–refusals to suffer.. seeking our will–are the attitudes we need to be looking out for. Those are our sins… anything that Christ or a saint wouldn’t do… any moment we notice ourselves wanting our will living outside of peace, with any of those sinful personality traits, we should be seeking Mercy to help us leave those sins to grow in the likeness of Christ.
“Become holy [like Christ] yourselves in EVERY aspect of your conduct, after the LIKENESS of The Holy One who called you” (1 Peter1:15).
Oh, the ways we aren’t like Christ are endless… if we want to see them. How about our refusal to understand others, our lack of kindness towards certain people, and our intolerance of others errors and wrong doings (lack of forgiveness)? We don’t forgive them, make their error no problem (as we happily carry the cross), understanding their weakness and then sincerely love/help them in return, like Christ does for us great sinners daily.
No; we don’t “love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you” (Matthew 5:24). We hold grudges and live with resentment in our hearts; we want to hurt those who hurt us, telling ourselves we deserve better as we wallow in self-pity… sometimes even making ourselves sick… all from our sins.
Sadly, we live for ourselves, and not to love and help others. Perhaps, we “say” we forgive others, so we won’t see ourselves as sinners, but our thoughts and actions prove it is just a lie. Oh, the lack of peace we have because of our sinfulness is great!
Yes, our lack of discipline, jealousy, negativity, laziness, vanity, gluttony, lies, immorality and the bounds of arguing and/or selfish things we do just to try to get what we want that a true saint wouldn’t ever do are so horrible. Really, what are we doing to leave them? Do we even realize that the evil one has us trapped into loving and continuing in these sins… but they are killing us?
“Do not worry” (Matthew 6:35)… “Do not complain” (James 5:9)… “Surely impatience kills” (Job 5:2)… “All bitterness, fury, anger, shouting, and reviling must be removed from you, along with all malice. [And] be kind to one another, compassionate, forgiving one another as God has forgiven you [who offend Him with countless sins of your own]” (Ephesians 4:31-32).
Oh, we all do different things. But the one thing we all have in common is that we aren’t working hard to leave so many of them. This is why we are dying in such great numbers. ” ” We love sin so much that we don’t sincerely want to do what is necessary to see our sins and change many of our sinful ways so we can love God (not offend Him). Yet, the refusal to amend just ONE rejects Heaven for Hell.
Therefore, to not live in the dark, please ask ourselves, are we truly striving to live all moments for Jesus, so to not give a second to sin, so to not offend God in the slightest way, because we want to LOVE HIM? Truly, is there anyone doing this? Is our focus on LOVING GOD (not offending Him) or on loving ourselves (getting what we want)? Oh, who wants to be a suffering servant (truly like Christ) for the salvation of souls? Horribly, who even thinks of our sins as not loving God? We are so deceived!
No wonder so few are saved. We still would rather sin than work hard to love Our Lord.
“Alas, daughter, how few there are who TRUEFULLY love me!”
–Jesus to St. Teresa of Avila, Doctor of the Church, (Autobiography, Ch. 40)
Oh, what good is our life if we can’t die and obtain Heaven! If we live believing a lie…. live so far from having true contrition for all of our sins… so far from a saving faith.
Tragically, from being deceived, we think we are justified because we are “Christians” or because we go to church or because we “say” we are sorry. But we are saved when we ACCEPT God’s forgiveness that He died to give us, which occurs when we grow in our faith to have TRUE LOVE FOR GOD, which is a direct result of having true contrition in our hearts for our life time of offences against Him. To learn more please read, “What Are the Requirements of Salvation?”
“Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord [with a heart that truly loves Him] will be saved” (Romans 10:13).
This is why we live such hypocritical lives… we go to church and say we love God, but then we go off committing horrible sins, treating others so poorly and repeating so many sins right afterwards, making every excuse in the world why we commit them, deceiving ourselves into thinking they are acceptable… as we ignore those sins, not caring about God and how we aren’t loving Him. We prove clearly we don’t really hate our sins nor love God. We have been greatly deceived… and from our great self-love, we have lost our knowledge of how to love Our Lord. To learn more please read, “How to Perfectly Love God.” Now is the time to seek Mercy to teach us The Way and save us.
“The time of death will not be the time to prepare ourselves to die well; to die well and happily [so we may go to Heaven], we must prepare ourselves beforehand, There will not be time then to eradicate bad habits from the soul [that keep us attached sin, and not Our Savior].”
–St. Alphonsus (The Way of Salvation and Perfection, Med. 13)
We are the Epitome of Selfishness
To grow in even greater humility–knowledge of our great sinfulness–since we must have humility, so we can be open to receiving God’s grace, we must know, we have become so self-absorbed, not only are we not even considering GOD whom we are offending–not loving–when we commit each sin, we also desire to take advantage of God and hurt Him in return for His love.
“We are so blinded by the enormity of our sins that it is impossible to comprehend, as we should, the extremity of our misery, which is yet supremely necessary for us to know.”
–St. Catherine of Genoa (Life and Doctrine, Ch. 15)
Please know our selfishness is extreme. We want God’s love and we want God’s love. When we are feeling badly, we run to Him. When we need help, we seek Him. We hear His call and go off to serve Him–to do His will–all to experience His love. Yes, we focus on God’s unconditional love for us, so we can love ourselves: get His love. This is true.
There are countless books written on how to obtain His love and peace. We seek Him day and night, not so He can help us to stop offending Him–not so we can love Him–but so He can make our lives better… so we can love ourselves.
We say we love God, but we only love Him for all the things He does for us, which is far from true love, as we beg Him for all that we desire. But we don’t really love Him… we don’t want to suffer and give up the world’s pleasures to help save the souls of His children…. we don’t want to deny ourselves of the sins we love so to love Him (to not offend Him).
No; we ask God for help and accept His gifts; we pray prayers day and night all to get His love (what we want)… help for ourselves and even for others. We take and take and take from Him… and don’t get me wrong God wants to help us, but what do we do in return? We say “thank you for the love and help,” if we even do that, and then we BEAT God unreservedly, with our unrestrained sins, as gratitude for all He does for us. We don’t see His great love and then want to return love to Him by working hard to stop offending Him… No; we just take mercy from God and leave, not caring at all about Him.
Horribly, we are so deceived… so selfish, we constantly seek God for self-seeking reasons: to experience His love (feel His peace), to heal us, or to make our or others lives better, but we don’t seek God to help us grow in faith, so we can better LOVE HIM: so we and/or others can stop offending Him, whom we should be loving with all of our hearts. But to love ourselves.
Most sadly, we prove our love for God is a very broken selfish love. Not saving love or even a real love. Reality is, we are the epitome of selfishness. Without seeking Mercy to remove this great self-love we are plagued with, we will surely die.
Sure, some of us are moved by The Spirit and feel great love for God that causes us to perhaps want to know, love and serve Him, but we wind up running off to do just that, but we do it with deceived hearts, not knowing how to truly love Him. Then we learn about God, pray prayers and serve Him but it just winds up being for self-pleasure, not to truly love Him (to never offend Him again). As a result, we just grow in greater prayers, knowledge and/or works thinking that is proof we are growing in holiness… but it isn’t. Sure, the truly faithful will be doing those things, but if we aren’t leaving sin and becoming TRULY like Christ, we are still quite dead. Please don’t be deceived!
“A meditation without fruit (us changing and becoming like Christ) is an amusement of the mind and a very dangerous form of idleness [causes us to desire God for self-love]. We must not judge of meditation by the tender sentiments we have experienced [the feeling God’s love], but by the profit we have derived from it, or at least by the sincere desire we have to do good and to practice virtue. When you leave meditation, however dry it may have been, with the desire, the resolution, to correct our faults and to do God’s will, your time has not been lost…
The end of prayer is to CORRECT OUR FAULTS, we should consider that as the best prayer which inspires us with the greatest horror of sin and the greatest desire to avoid it.
–St. Francis De Sales, Doctor of the Church (The Secrets of Sanctity, Third Treatise, Prayer Ch 1, Sec. 4 & Ch 10)
Our Selfish Love for God!
There are many kinds of love for God we can have or feel. But reality is, most of us have not grown so much in our faith for our love to become even close to a true/saving love… sadly, most of us don’t even have enough grace to have real love for God (a love that can develop into true love)… mostly because we aren’t seeking it (we don’t know we need it). We are stuck living in a selfish love for God, not really loving God nor profiting towards salvation from anything we do no matter how “good” it is. Tragic! To learn more please read, “How to Perfectly Love God.”
Our minds are focused on getting love from God… not giving it. We are looking for God to make us happy, not for us to make Him happy. The devil has blinded us. This must change. We must gain a desire to seek Jesus for grace, so we can LEARN HOW TO TRULY LOVE HIM. Loving God must become our focus, which is done through the cross… following the example Christ and the saints have taught us. To learn more please read, “How to Perfectly Love God.”
Please know, the most agonizing day for God, where His Sacred Heart is tortured the greatest from our lack of love for Him, is “Divine Mercy Sunday.” This is the day God has given to His Church to send great grace to help His children and we either ignore this day and its preparations all together, or we only want to TAKE AND TAKE mercy from God. We care NOTHING for Him.
During the Divine Mercy celebration, we might pray and sing praise to God but sadly, it is from dead hearts. Our cold hearts are not focused on seeking His love/mercy, so we can learn how to perfectly love Him (to never offend Him again)… we just want to get out of jail for free–thinking we can some how steal God’s mercy and have our hearts, which are greatly lacking true sorrow for our vast offences against Him, forgiven and atoned for.
Yet, I promise you “God is not mocked, a person will only reap what he sows.” (Galatians 6:7). Oh, how deceived we are! If we sow in a life of pride, we will reap a death in sin. I tell you with such cold, deceived hearts, we will reject any grace that God has desired to send. Our love for Him is an utter abomination.
“I [Jesus] will allow convents and churches to be destroyed. I [St. Faustina] answered, ‘Jesus, but there are so many souls praising You in convents.’ The Lord answered, That praise wounds My Heart because love [the desire to not offend Me] has been banished from convents [and churches].
Souls without [true] love and without [true] devotion, souls full of egoism and self-love, souls full of pride and arrogance, souls full of deceit and hypocrisy, lukewarm souls [who have no fear of sin, who aren’t growing towards perfection] who have just enough warmth to keep them alive: My Heart cannot bear this. All the graces that I pour out upon them flow off them as off the face of a rock…
And if they DO NOT REPENT and become enkindled by their first love [God, not the world], I will deliver them over to the fate of this world. How can they sit on the promised throne of judgment to judge the world, when their guilt is greater than the guilt of the world?
There is neither PENANCE nor ATONEMENT… O heart especially chosen by Me [to do great works for God], were you chosen for this, give Me more pain? The great sins of the world are superficial wounds on My Heart, but the sins of a chosen soul pierce My Heart through and through.”
–Jesus to St. Faustina Diary (#1702)
We aren’t true disciples of Christ, who love Him…. we are just someone who follows Christ for all of the “perks” He gives us, but we don’t want to learn how to stop offending Him–TO LOVE HIM. We want God to love us.
And when God loves us, by allowing us to feel His love in a way we can understand, by giving us what we seek, even by using things of the world to show His love, which He does, not to promote more selfish prayers, but hoping we will want to truly love Him in return (which is how we are saved). We might “say” we love Him, since we obtained what we desired… but we prove our love is so far from true, since don’t even desire to LOVE HIM: we don’t even want to work hard to stop our constant offences against Him. What kind of love is that?
Sadly, we aren’t truly striving to become saints, someone who wants nothing but God’s will, loves our crosses and desires to never offend Him with the slightest offence…. which is our entire purpose of our lives. Yes, we are supposed to be striving to become SAINTS. Don’t we know, only saints are in Heaven. .””... which is addressed later. Oh, we been deceived.
Instead of seeking God for grace to help us sanctify our souls, we seek Him to love ourselves– to give us what our selfish desires want. Oh, we have a billion self-serving prayers we pray daily. Where is our love for God?
“For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments” (1 John 5:3).
But even with our horrible lack of love for God, His love for us is without end. His mercy is unfathomable. He still wants to save us. And if we seek Him correctly… humbly, and allow Him to change us, He can.
“Though the mountains fall away and the hills be shaken, My love shall never fall away from you [He will still try to save us]” (Isaiah 54:10).
Mortal Sins Are Everywhere
Prior to reading this article, a lot of people won’t believe we are one of the damned, because we don’t think we commit any mortal sins–we think we have a saving faith/true contrition–which is understandable since most have lived our lives being so greatly deceived. Mortal sins are hard to understand. But, “the majority of men [whether we see our mortal sins or not] will not [see God]” as St. Justin speaks about in his dialogue with Trypho, (Ch. 4).
Yes, mortal sin–“deadly sin” (1 John 5:16)–sins that reject Heaven for Hell–are in the “majority of men” but most can’t see them. Again, this is because of our pride. We don’t really want to see; we don’t want to know we error… well, at least not that greatly, since we pride ourselves as being good.
Therefore, to not be deceived, so we may correctly/humbly seek Mercy to enlighten us, let’s please look with humility for where we are going wrong–knowing we are sinners, who are far from perfect and can greatly error.
The reason we are so deceived and don’t think we have “deadly sin” on our souls is because we don’t really understand what the deadly sins are nor what makes a sin deadly. To learn more please read, “What Are Mortal Sins?” Yet, dying with any unrepentant mortal sin on our souls damns us forever. It is a rejection of God for sin. We need to learn what these are.
“Mortal sin… results in the loss of charity and the privation [loss] of sanctifying grace, that is, of the state of grace. If it is not redeemed by repentance and God’s forgiveness, it causes exclusion from Christ’s kingdom and the eternal death of hell” (CCC # 1861).
To prevent us from dying with unrepentant mortal sins that we can’t see, even though we should know what they are since, like was said, “what the law requires is written on their hearts” (Romans 2:15), so please don’t think we are without guilt if we don’t “know” these sins, but to help us who have blocked much knowledge of the truth from our hearts, God clearly tells us what some of our deadly sins are:
“Be sure of this, that no fornicator [sexual relations outside of marriage] or impure person [thinking, watching, listening, wearing or doing anything impure], or one who is greedy [has more than we need], that is, an idolater, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God” (Ephesians 5:5).
“Do you not know that [unrepentant] wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived! Fornicators, idolaters [those who desire anything of the world (the created, not the Creator) and/or its pleasures for happiness instead of God], adulterers, male prostitutes, sodomites [homosexuals], thieves, the greedy, drunkards, revilers [those who argue], robbers—none of these will inherit the kingdom of God.” (1 Corinthians 6:9:10).
Hopefully we can clearly hear God’s warnings in those Bible verses. If we can see that we commit any of these sins, then we are blessed to have eyes that can see some of the places we are going wrong. But if we don’t, then it is much more challenging to know some of our great failures to love God (our mortal sins).
I do want to mention that some of our sins aren’t innately know, since we are breaking perhaps people created laws, etc., but most sins are known, since they are derived from The Law of Love, which is in our conscience.
Now, some people want to argue that some of those sins are sometimes only venial (a lesser serious/non-deadly sin), and that is true. If we commit any sin and it isn’t a grave matter, then it is not a mortal sin. And if we hate it, have contrition alone God will forgive us of that sin.
But please don’t be deceived… like was said, any venial that we ignore, think lightly of, don’t seek/desire to amend–don’t TRULY hate–no matter how slight it is, that sin is now mortal. It is a grave matter to not be truly sorry for offending God with any sin. Yes, any sin we aren’t horrified that we commit, because we can’t bear the fact that we aren’t loving God, is a mortal sin. We must grow in faith to truly hate to offend God, even with the slightest sin, or we still desire/love sin (are attached to sin), instead of God.
Therefore, if we desire or commit even a venial sin, and we love God so little that it doesn’t even bother us that we are not loving God when we commit that sin, from our lack of hatred for sinning–our lack of care for offending God–that venial sin has now become mortal and rejects Heaven for Hell. We must hate to offend God and be working hard to avoid and leave ALL of our offences if we wish to not die from mortal… “deadly sin” (1 John 5:16).
“Venial sin is an offense done to God and this offense contains in itself so much malice that one should not commit it, not even if thereby he could save a man’s life, not even if her could save all the inhbitants of the world… .”
–Jesus to St. Bridget of Sweden (Prophecies and Revelations, Ch. 19)
With that said, as we can see, there are really two types of deadly sins:
We must learn how to leave them all or we will reject God and His saving mercy for those sins.
All mortal sins vary in severity, but the one thing they all have in common is they are all deadly. All Mortal Sins have varying degrees of severity based on the type of sins which are committed and the “knowledge” we possess when we commit them.
For any sin to become mortal, we must possess “full knowledge” of it. But like was said, most sins are part of the Law of Love that God created, and are written within our hearts. Therefore, if we want to learn about those sins, all we have to do is sincerely seek it within ourselves. But if we become darkened to the truth that is within us and now the truth isn’t in the forefront of our conscience but we commit a sin, deceiving ourselves into thinking it is “good”, then that is one of the lesser serious mortal sins, since we aren’t possessing active conscience thought about it being wrong.
However, once we become enlightened to The Truth, and come to see some of our misery… our vast sins we have hidden in the dark–and the knowledge of the sin is moved to the forefront of our conscience–and we commit the sin, then severity of that sin increases, since our “full knowledge” increased.
Now, the most grave kind of sin we can commit is when we know in the forefront of our conscience that it is a sin, and we actively think about how it is sinful, but we just don’t care and we commit it anyway. That is the worse kind of sin.
Probably for most of our sins before reading this article we committed the lesser serious mortal sins, but now from having the light of truth shine upon us, and now we know more clearly in the forefront of our conscience we are actually choosing many sins, the consequences of our sins actually increases. For the more is given the more is required and the greater the consequences are when we fail to obey.
Holy Communion and Mortal Sin
Most of us are aware that we can’t receive Holy Communion while being in the state of mortal sin. But most don’t know that there are certain mortal sins which Holy Communion is designed to eradicate and other mortal sins which cause great harm to God and ourselves if we choose to receive Holy Communion without truly repenting and stopping them.
Please know Holy Communion can’t be received without great punishment and injury to God if we haven’t confessed and stopped all regular mortal sins. This is mostly common knowledge among the faithful.
But unknown to most, if we commit an irregular mortal sin but we have at least a real resolve to sin no more–our resolution to leave the sins that isn’t a lie… meaning: we are willing to make resolutions and changes so we stop sinning, then we can receive Holy Communion for the strength from God to move us towards doing just that so we can gain a true hatred for them (a saving faith) and then grow into a perfect saint.
But if we are not able to grow… to change… to gradually leave the sin–because we are not really resolved to stop sinning–then our sin becomes a regular grave mortal sin and we must refrain from Holy Communion until we obtain more grace for our desire to change to become a real/active desire.
We also need to know that there are different kinds of resolves to amend–different intensities of desire to sin no more:
- true desire (a saving desire),
- real desire (a honest desire to amend that produces action and results),
- false desire (a desire in thought/word alone… just a lie).
But to receive Holy Communion worthily, at the moment of receiving, we must have at least a heart that has no regular mortal sins unconfessed and not stopped, AND we must be with a heart that sincerely desires to love God/to never offend Him again–which has at least a real desire to amend… a desire that will leave Holy Communion and work hard to change (proving we accepted God’s grace from the Eucharist/didn’t reject it). Then we can grow towards perfect maturity, which is the purpose of Holy Communion.
“Amen, amen, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood [receive Holy Communion], you do not have life within you [for the grace needed to move you to a saving faith (life) has been omitted]” (John 6:53).
That means if we think we are sincere in our desire to change, we must leave the Sacrament of the Eucharist and actually do things to not sin… not just “say” we want to stop and really do nothing… staying the same or we prove our desire just isn’t sincere, and we have rejected the transforming grace from the Sacrament (Eucharist).
We must have proof our desire to amend is real, that we are accepting grace, by putting our contrition into action and changing. Now our desire to amend doesn’t need to be true, having a desire so great we would rather suffer anything even death rather than sin, as explained later, since The Eucharist is meant to move those, who can grow, into a true desire to amend–a saving faith. But to receive Communion and obtain grace, our desire can’t be a lie (just a desire in thought or word alone).
“Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood [accepts the transforming grace from the sacrament] has eternal life” (John 6:54).
Therefore, if we confess our sin but then at the next opportunity, we recommit the sin with no reservation, no improvement, we proved our desire to amend was just a lie. Or if we improve one day, but then we just stay the same with the following, again, we prove our desire is a lie. Now, if we fall once that isn’t the problem, unless it is with a grave sin, but if we fall and fall and fall doing the same venial sin with no improvement over and over again, we have proven our desire to amend if false.
We must be looking into what is causing us to sin, making resolutions to avoid the sin and sticking to it or modifying it until it works, along with living a life of seeking God’s mercy (strength) from the sacraments, prayer, penance and fasting, to amend our sins (as explained later).
So, if we don’t have a desire to amend that leads to some actual change–a faith that can grow–we must abstain until we receive more grace. This is because a dead faith can’t receive grace… and will only receive “punishment” from receiving The Eucharist in vain.
“For anyone who eats and drinks [receives Holy Communion] without discerning the body [seeing, confessing, and amending one’s sins], eats and drinks judgment on himself. That is why many among you are ill and infirm [suffering from our sins], and a considerable number are dying [going to Hell]” (1 Corinthians 11:29-30).
Ways we receive grace to gain a real desire to grow (a real desire to amend our sins):
- Sacrament of reconciliation,
- Contemplating our sinfulness,
- Contemplating the consequences of sin,
- Works of mercy,
- Acts of penance,
- Prayer and,
- Fasting (to learn discipline).
Those are some of the ways, if we humbly perform them, we can gain a real desire to grow in faith. It doesn’t matter how much we have grown (amended our sins/gained a hatred for sin), once we stop with any sin, we must take recourse to those means of obtaining grace to help rekindle a desire to amend all our sins again. Sure we can’t physically amend or even see every sin (everything outside of perfection) all at once, but when we have a faith that can grow, we will sincerely desire to not sin at all and know clearly (in our conscience) what sins we must be working on the greatest to leave, so to grow in faith to sin no more.
“I give this Blood [Communion] and use It for salvation [to bring souls to a saving faith] and perfection [to bring souls to become a perfect saint] in the case of that man who disposes himself properly to receive it [can grow in faith], for It gives life and adorns the soul with every grace, in proportion to the disposition and affection of him who receives It. Similarly It gives death to him who receives It unworthily, living in iniquity and in the darkness of mortal sin; to him, I say, It gives death and not life”
–God the Father to St. Catherine of Sienna (Dialogue, Treatise on Discretion)
Therefore, to receive The Blessed Sacrament, without punishment, our desire to amend ANY SIN can’t be a lie, or we reject all grace from The Holy Eucharist, which causes horrible consequences. To learn more please read, “How to Receive Holy Communion Worthily.”
Suffer Rather Than Offend God
In order to obtain a saving faith… to truly want to sin no more –to have true contrition for our sins–our hatred for sin and resolve we need to amend our trespasses can’t be a small hatred or resolve–a half-hearted effort. No. Like was said, to be saved, our belief in Jesus must grow from some faith–having a slight desire to love God, some desire to not offend Him–until we love and believe in God so greatly, we would choose to suffer anything rather than offend Him… even to the point of shedding blood rather than sinning. This is when we truly hate sin.
“In your struggle against [removing your liking/desire for] sin, you have not yet resisted [temptation enough] to the point of shedding blood [to avoid offending God].” (Hebrews 12:4)
Yes, souls who truly love God don’t just seek His grace thinking His grace will save them. Only having concern for themselves (getting to Heaven). No, souls who truly love God want to die for Him… would do anything rather than offend The One they love.
“Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin [truly hate sin] still live in it [still continue in it]? Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death [we must die to sin/come to truly hate sin, if we are to Live]?” (Romans 5:19-6:3).
When we truly love God, we will daily die for the love of Him. We are called to die to ourselves… to suffer and deny ourselves of what we want–our sins–so to not choose to satisfy the sinful, self-loving desires we have. And yes, it is hard to restrain ourselves from sinning…. especially if we have made them a habitually practice, but that is how we love God/die for Him.
Therefore, if we desire to embrace God’s saving forgiving mercy, we must lose our self-love so we can embrace God’s saving love and that is done by growing in our faith from being willing to suffer a little to love God… all the way to be willing to “shed blood” rather than sin… than to do anything that Christ or a self-sacrificing saint wouldn’t do.
Oh, but how far are we from this kind of love… this kind of hatred for sin? Be willing to shed blood rather than sin… oh, most of us won’t do anything to avoid sinning… never mind suffer. If we have a craving, we don’t know how to apply restraint, make a resolution, or avoid what is leading us to sin; we just fill it. We greatly lack discipline for the love of God. Some might have discipline for the love of self, but not for the love of God. We need Mercy to give us a desire and strength to truly live the faith.
Therefore, we need to GROW in our hatred for sin from just some hatred, which perhaps only has a thought of stopping a sin, into a hatred so great we would rather suffer anything even death than offend God again with any sin. Please don’t be deceived.
“If you ask me what [true] repentance is, I tell you that it is an anguish of the soul, and a detestation for past sin, and a firm resolve never to sin again… No my friends, you must not rely on tears alone. They are often deceiving, and many persons weep in the confessional and fall back into the same sin at the first opportunity… Christians who have sinned and wish to obtain pardon, must be so minded that he would rather SUFFER THE MOST CRUEL TORTURES than fall back into the sin which he has just confessed.
–St. John Vianney, (Sermon of the Cure d Ars, Passion Sunday: Repentance).
Truly, if we lack this contrition–this hatred for sin–for just ONE sin, we reject God and His saving forgiving mercy for that sin. This is the truth. To be able to accept God’s saving mercy, we must reject sin–ALL sin–so we can choose Him over evil… not just in our words but in our hearts, which is proven by our actions.
This is why we need Jesus so greatly to save us. To obtain this kind of faith, which saves, takes A LOT OF GRACE. To do this, we need to seek Mercy to help us grow into such a great love for Him, to where we love Him above ourselves… then we would rather suffer greatly than to offend, in the slightest way, The One we seek to love. This is true love.
This is the kind of contrition we need before we can atone for a single sin after our baptism too. But, we have been deceived. Tragically, we have wasted away our lives seeking bounds of worthless things instead of seeking salvation (a saving faith) and then sanctity.
If we were really sorrowful for our sins and really hated to offend God, I promise you, we most certainly would be leaving everything that causes us to sin, and making real resolutions to help prevent us from sinning, and seeking Him daily for help (grace), as we work hard every moment to avoid sin, all sin and we would be growing into saints. Not casually repeating them over and over again.
“If your hand or foot causes you to sin [if anything causes you to sin], cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to enter into life [Heaven] maimed or crippled [without what we want] than with two hands or two feet [with what we want] to be thrown into eternal fire” (Matthew 18:8).
Honestly, what have we rid from our lives that is causing us to sin? What resolutions did we have today to not sin again… did we even have a resolution to amend a single sin or a single idol/attachment? Oh, we are far from being willing to suffer rather than offend God. Yet, if there is just ONE sin we ignore, don’t work hard to leave, and neglect to obtain a true hatred for (true contrition), we choose that sin over God. Oh, the devil has deceived us!
“Among the penitent’s acts [the person confessing their sins] contrition occupies first place [since it is needed for salvation and forgiveness]. Contrition is sorrow of the soul and detestation for the sin committed, together with the RESOLUTION NOT TO SIN AGAIN.”
–Pope St. John Paul II (CCC #1451)
Now is the time to learn how to remove what is causing us to sin and make and keep real resolutions to amend our ways. We simply can’t continue to sin. If we were really sorry, truly we would be removing all that causes us to sin.
“Many of those who had believed [Jesus is Lord] kept coming, confessing and disclosing their [sinful] practices [wanting forgiveness]. And many of those who [sinned] brought their [devices of sin] together and began burning them in the sight of everyone [which proved their true desire to sin no more]” (Acts 19:18-19).
Our Consequences from Sin
Please know, every sin we commit has such horrific consequences. It isn’t no big deal; it is a huge concern. Frankly, it is impossible to adequately describe the devastating effects just ONE sin causes. EVERY SIN effects us, others and God. Yes, every sin has a three fold repercussion attached to each sin. We might think we aren’t hurting anyone… oh, but we are very wrong, as explained through out this article. The consequences of a single sin are great!
“One venial sin can do us greater harm than all the forces of hell–for that is really true.”
–St. Theresa of Avila (Autobiography, Ch. 25)
Yes, one sin is unfathomably horrible. All humanity deserves death from Adam and Eve’s one sin. That is how horrendous just one offence is against Perfect Goodness.
“For this single sin [prideful defiance of God’s command], Adam was left deprived of all [true] happiness… [and all his] descendants are condemned [needing a Savior]… For this single sin, a majority of adults are damned for all eternity [since they reject their Savior for sin]… [Yes], one who (mortally) sins once, deserves hell… O, sin how great is the evil hidden in you!”
— St. Anthony Mary Claret (The Golden Key to Heaven, Med. 4)
Yet, we live in a world that has done its best to strip us of all fear of sinning. We have been convinced the way to happiness is to not concern ourselves with our sins… to “just focus on God’s mercy (forgiveness)”, we say, as if our sins have no consequences… as if our sins don’t offend God… as if we can accept His forgiveness… that “God doesn’t punish.”
Oh, we have been so deceived we think God doesn’t punish… that being punished isn’t loving… that our God would never do that. But that is the exact opposite of what The Word and the saints teach.
“If you are without discipline, in which all have shared, you are not sons but bastards” (Hebrews 12:8).
Surly, we are being punished… disciplined by God, even if we can’t recognize it. We are children of God; aren’t we? St. Augustine says “Whenever we suffer some affliction, we should regard it both as punishment and as correction” (Divine Office Vol. IV, pg 133), since it is a form of guidance and penance (a cross) to help lead us to Life.
Please know, God’s punishments (the consequences of our sins) are not meant to “hurt” us, but to help us, who can be helped, even though they will “hurt.” For without them, we would never change; we would have no hope for Life… and suffer an eternity of consequences, from Divine Justice, which is what God’s mercy doesn’t want to happen. Just remember God is Love and love is mercy and justice combined.
“So speak and so act as people who will be judged… For the judgment is merciless to one who has not shown mercy [who has lacked forgiveness of others]; [yet] mercy [if we can accept it] triumphs over judgment” (James 2:12-13).
Therefore, please don’t be deceived; God most certainly punishes: allows us to suffer from the direct or indirect consequences of our sins.
For example: a direct consequence would be like if we over eat (suffer from gluttony) and eat to satisfy our desire, not from discipline (grace and desire) to nourish our bodies appropriately; then we will get fat. Or, if we treat someone poorly from our lack of discipline (lack of grace and desire) to have understanding and patience with another; then they will hurt another and they will think poorly of us and perhaps even treat us poorly in return.
Where indirect consequences, for example, are like if we don’t attend Mass on Sunday or commit some other sin, but aren’t changing; then to show us of our need to change, God will allow a cross (something we don’t like) to happen to us, so we will want to turn Him for help or so we can see our sin and need to change. Or lets say, if we do wrong to another, God will allow someone else to do the same wrong to us, so we can come to see our sin (when we feel the sting of another) so we can repent. But if we keep on ignoring the consequences of our sins, sometimes even bigger sufferings will come, to awaken us to our great need to change… to sin no more…. before it is too late.
“Look, you are well [I healed you like you asked]; do not sin any more, so that nothing worse may happen to you [so a greater punishment may not occur]” (John 5:14).
Yes, God disciplines us like any loving father would. “For he wounds, but he binds up; he strikes, but his hands give healing.” (Job 5:18). That is what our suffering is… a punishment… a way to be healed by Christ.
But, if we don’t want any more punishments/sufferings because of our sins, then heed Christ’s Words, “do not sin any more.” But the punishment we do have is a way for us sinners to learn and grow so we can obtain a saving faith, and become like Christ, since He wants us in Heaven.
I know this is hard to understand when we suffer something horrific and perhaps even at the hand of another, especially if we don’t see how we “need” that suffering or if we don’t see our sins as “that bad” to warrant what we are going through. But I tell you, God doesn’t make mistakes. What we are suffering is allowed by God to help save us. He has a plan to use that suffering, no matter how great it is, to help move us–great sinners that we are–towards a saving faith and then towards becoming a saint, so we can be purified to enter into Heaven (since only saints go to Heaven). Therefore remember, we are far from perfect saints and need the cross to purify our souls.
“I am the wheat of God, and let me be ground by the teeth of the wild beasts [the lions that the emperor of Rome wishes for me to suffer from], that I may be found the PURE… From Syria to Rome I fight with beasts [suffer], by land and sea, by night and day… Yet in the school of this abuse I am more and more trained in [true] discipleship, although I am not therefore justified [I’m not yet saved]…
Now I begin to be a disciple. May nothing seen or unseen fascinate me [distract me], so that I may happily make my way to Jesus Christ! Let fire and the cross; let the crowds of wild beasts; let tearings, breakings, and dislocations of bones; mangling of limbs; crunching of the whole body; and let all the dreadful torments of the devil come upon me: only let me make my way to Jesus Christ [through the cross].”
–St. Ignatius of Antioch (Letter to the Romans)
Therefore, please know, the more greatly we suffer, the greater the opportunity we have to change (to purify our souls). So, the greater the suffering the greater blessings God wishes to bestow upon us. Therefore, never despair over our suffering, God is loving us… giving us a fantastic chance for conversion for the salvation and sanctity of our souls. Eternity is everything. The cross is The Way to Christ!
But tragically, most of us hate or ignore His love: our suffering… His fatherly punishments… His discipline… His guidance through the cross to Life. We just want our suffering to leave. Therefore, we don’t obtain the grace from the crosses God intended to give us… and we don’t grow in faith. We simply aren’t meriting from our suffering… not fully, if anything at all. Most suffer completely in vain. Tragic!
Sure, our sufferings are for all different reasons… some aren’t even an direct consequence of our sinfulness, but all are meant to be used as a penance. To learn more please read “Why Does God Allow Suffering and Punishment?” But please tell me, what father, who really loves their child, doesn’t give him rules he needs to follow (for his good) and then punishes his child when he continues to ignore his directions, to help motivate him to obey?
A parent who doesn’t really love, who just doesn’t want to be bothered, who just doesn’t care enough about the well being of their child, doesn’t punish… A parent, who likes to make their child “happy” all of the time, who has forgotten about his greater good–his eternal or even future earthly happiness–is the kind of parent that doesn’t punish.
God is not like that. He is a Father of Perfect Love. Therefore, He provides us with perfect punishments to help motivate and move us towards Life, that is, IF we recognize and love His discipline.
“The discipline of the Lord, my son, do not spurn; do not disdain his reproof; For whom the Lord loves he reproves” (Proverbs 3:11-12).
Tragically, from being deceived into thinking God doesn’t punish, God’s warnings and fatherly punishments (all of our suffering and hardships in life), that were meant to strengthen us to become like Christ, steer us in the right direction, enlighten us to our sins, and give us a reason to change have been ignored. And now we aren’t amending our ways, growing towards a saving faith and sanctity. We are dying.
Horribly, most don’t even think God punishes anymore, and we spread this deception to others which is leading us to our doom, giving us a great lack of motivation to change.
“Fear of punishment deters a man from sinning.”
–St. Thomas Aquinas, Doctor of the Church (Shorter Summa #121)
We need a great fear of being punished to be willing to move from our fantastic habitual sins we have made an acceptable part of our lives. I tell you, We have been living without fear for so long, it is going to take a lot to move us to change.
Horribly, as a result of ignoring our sufferings–not looking for what God was wanting to teach/help us through them–we haven’t been learning, changing nor growing towards maturity (a saving faith).
But now, if God has touched us, and we want to love God and Live, we are going to need to learn how to see God’s love (His warnings, punishments, lessons, etc.), recognize our sins and learn how to change so we can no longer live by the impulses of our flesh, but live by The Spirit, so we can come to truly hate sin and truly love God… so one day we can “sin no more.”
Please know with EVERY SIN, even the slightest, from our first sin to the last sin at our death, that we willfully commit, we willfully choose its equal punishment (the consequences of our sins). For “every transgression and disobedience received its just penalty” (Hebrews 2:2), which can be received in Hell, and/or through temporal punishment… like in this life, like was said–“for these days are the time of punishment” (Luke 21:22) to learn right from wrong, as many of us are experiencing.
Yes, every sin has its consequence: eternal and/or temporal punishment. Yet, our eternal punishment in Hell will vary from soul to soul based on the severity of each and every unrepentant sin we have committed during our life time on earth… but for “Christians” the severity is greater than the pagan, since so much more was given to us and is now expected of us. To learn more please read, “Who Suffers the Most in Hell?”
Truly, this is terrifying! We should be “work[ing] out our salvation with fear and trembling” (Philippians 2:12). But from being deceived, we aren’t. We have been lulled to sleep with lies of the deceiver.
“The sinner who is to be renewed through repentance is often described in the Word of God as being submerged in a deep sleep… [they] are absolutely indifferent to the matter of their own salvation and are not aware of the danger they are in.”
–St. Theophan the Recluse (Turning the Heart to God, Ch. 2)
Do we carefully observe what we think, wear, watch and do to see to it we only do what Christ or a saint would do… to see we do “not indulge in [the slightest] immorality” (1 Corinthians 10:8)? How could anyone, who seeks to “keep yourself pure” (1 Timothy 5:22), so to not offend God, watch the shows that everyone watches, wear the clothes that every one wears, or even look at the social media that everyone one uses. We are constantly being bombarded with immorality through them? Yet, we do those things… we aren’t TRULY striving to live the law of Love. We love our worldly pleasures and ignore our sins.
Yet, these commands of God listed above, are just the smallest fraction of what God expects of us if we love/believe in Him. But are we even seeking Mercy for grace to help us live these very few commands? Or do we justify those occasions in which we commit those sin as no big deal… thinking we could be worse as we continue in them without concern. How far are we from truly repenting of them?
Oh, what kind of eternal torments are we choosing? Do we really understand what awaits us if we don’t gain a true hatred/true contrition for EVERY SIN? We simply must “wake up” (Isaiah 51:17) and gain concern for our eternal lives. Eternity is forever!
“The lost are plunged in their infernal abyss;—suffering indescribable torture in every sense and every member; and that [is] because having used their members and senses for sin, it is just that through them they should suffer now.”
–St. Francis de Sales, Doctor of the Church (Introduction to the Devout Life, Ch.15)
But on top of that, if that isn’t horrifying enough, like God the Father told to St. Catherine, every single sin rejects some amount of God’s grace (His help on earth) depending upon the severity of the sin. The help we need to obtain a saving faith–true hatred for sinning… so we can sincerely lose our desire for any sin–so we can avoid such a horrid reality and to obtain a life of peace on earth, we are rejecting because of our sins. This is why we are far from being in true peace when things go wrong. We need God’s help, but sadly, we are rejecting it.
The great peace God promises to those who truly love Him, we simply don’t have, which is clear proof we are not correctly living the faith. “Great peace have those who love your law” (Psalm 119:165). Truly, there is such fantastic peace, especially when sufferings and problems arise (the cross comes into our lives), when we truly love God and His law, but we aren’t experiencing it.
Please know, when we have God’s grace and are living the faith correctly, we are not crushed by the cross no matter what it is; we are strengthened by it and grow closer to God because of it. God sends a peace that most certainly surpasses all understanding to those who love the cross of Christ, who love and trust in all God allows.
“The peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus [when we truly love/trust Him]” (Philippians 4:7).
Truly, when we love the cross, we don’t become more self-absorbed when we have troubles, wanting to care for ourselves and remove our crosses. No, we become more like Christ and carry our crosses happily according to God’s will, so grace can be sent for the salvation of souls through them.
But when we don’t sincerely trust in God, many of our crosses are simply devastating and crush us. We are far from being enveloped in God’s unsurpassable peace. Oh, we can “say” we trust in God, but we prove our words simply aren’t true by our lack of peace. Tragically, from our unrepentant/unchanged sins, we have rejected our life of peace…. as we clearly see whenever we have frustrations, worries, complaints or when we are with a poor mood/attitude when things don’t go the way we desire.
And if we don’t repent, or if we refuse to change, or if we pretend like any of our sins aren’t sins, or if we think little of any trespass, then those sins reject MUCH grace from God… since they are mortal, which makes us weaker and weaker and unable to live the rest of The Word correctly even if we were to try. Yes, every sin counts.
Even if we believe we only commit venial sins, the more we commit them, the more they weaken our souls (reject grace) into committing mortal sin and from being so deceived, we most likely won’t even recognize them. Yet, the slightest venial sin rejects enough grace to cause us to commit another venial sin and then it just spirals from there. And if we don’t even recognize our venial sins, repent of them and practice restraint, we will commit more and more. Then, before we know it, we are committing mortal sin (rejecting bounds of grace) and most of the time we are blind to it… going deeper and deeper into its trap: loving our sins more and more, making it harder and harder to leave.
“Venial sin weakens charity [love]; it manifests a disordered affection for created goods [creates idols]; it impedes the soul’s progress [towards a saving faith] in the exercise of the virtues and the practice of the moral good; it merits temporal punishment. Deliberate and unrepented venial sin disposes us little by little to commit mortal sin…
[If you] do not despise these sins which we call “light”: if you take them for light when you weigh them, [then you must] tremble when you count them. A number of light objects makes a great mass.” (CCC #1863)
For example: Let’s say instead of living the faith correctly and waking up on time to pray for God to help us to avoid sinning and live for His will, we choose to sleep in. Then weakened (rejecting grace) from being a sloth, perhaps we fall into distractions in our morning after we do finally get up, which prevents us from praying before we begin our day, so we can have God’s grace move our thoughts, words and deeds.
Maybe, after we realize we are not living according to God’s priorities (sinning), we might try to fit in our prayers but now lacking time, we rush through them, praying them poorly (rejecting more grace), perhaps not even finishing some of them (rejecting even more grace). From there, if we don’t notice our error and/or repent, since we didn’t look for our sins, we will fail in many acts of love (sin) in our day (losing more and more grace), perhaps not even recognizing many of our trespasses, since our sins make us blind.
Then from being even more weakened (from rejecting grace) because of our sins, maybe we will make excuses as to why it is okay to miss more dedicated time for prayer later in our day and now from being greatly weak–since God is to be our strength–but from not seeking God for help correctly in our day and sinning, we will fall into perhaps immorality when tempted. Then maybe from our great weakness, a lesser immoral thought that we entertain, from not having the grace to restrain that desire, turns into deadly lust or wanting to be lusted over… or even worse.
“Be sure of this, that no immoral or impure… person… has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God” (Ephesians 5:5).
I hope we can see how every sin and our lack of “praying without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17) counts. The strength we need to obtain Life, we are rejecting. We must change. But sadly, most think nothing of these sins, and/or can’t even recognize in our conscience that we are committing them, since from the devil’s great deception, we have a great “loss of the sense of sin” as Pope St. John Paul II has taught us in his “Apostolic Exhortation on Reconciliation and Penance.”
Nonetheless, can we see how each and every failure to do what Jesus or a saint would do, every act of self-love, renders us weaker and weaker, blinder and blinder, until we commit mortal sin and more mortal sin.
Yet, every deadly sin, whether it is our lack of hatred for our venial sins or any of the other grave sins we can commit, not only weakens us but it increases our blindness to The Way to Heaven causing us to become more and more lost. To learn more please read, “What Are Mortal Sins?”
“By mortal sin we forfeit the friendship of God… [it] deprives the soul of all merit [from works]… [and it] deprives us of our liberty [freedom from control and death by sin]… [it] robs us of peace of heart… [and it] destroys the soul [making it unable to] see… [or] hear… [and makes us] insensible… [and the spreader of] corruption.”
–St. Ignatius of Loyola (Spiritual Exercises, Fifth Exercise)
Yes horribly, from being deceived into thinking it doesn’t matter if we are offending God, we commit countless sins without restraint, proving we have no sorrow for our endless trespasses against Our Lord, that our love for God is so little, and that we are not living the faith correctly and dying.
“Sorrow for sin is a grief of the soul leading us to detest [hate] sins committed and to resolve not to commit them any more” as Pope St. Pius X taught in his catechism. Sadly, now, from not having true faith nor true sorrow for offending God, we are unknowingly rejecting God and Eternal Life, from our a great lack of love for Him (our great lack of hatred for sin).
Horribly, from being so “darkened in understanding” (Ephesians 4:18), who REALLY understands that without having true sorrow, for literally every offence we have ever committed against God, we are choosing Hell (sin) over God? Is there anyone?
Well, I mean sure many of us know we need to be truly sorrow to be forgiven. That is part of our innate understanding. We haven’t all blocked this reality from our conscience. But if we REALLY knew, we were choosing “Hades, being in torment [for eternity]” (Luke 16:23), if we neglected to hate any sin enough to have at least a firm amendment to leave any sin… if our hearts still desired any sin upon our death, wouldn’t we be running to God… sincerely seeking Mercy DAILY to help us sincerely hate and leave all of our offences. Then from our desire to change being TRUE, wouldn’t we be growing in our hatred for our sins and amending them and changing. But we aren’t.
Sadly, we might “say” we hate our sins, but we are committing the same sins, day in and day out, with little to no change at all. For most of our sins, we are without even the smallest thought or effort towards amending them. We are far from having a true desire–a burning passion—“a fire of the spirit which in its zeal penetrates our whole being [to stop our sins]” as St. Theopahn the Recluse teaches in his book “The Path to Salvation” (Ch. 1). Oh, we are far from having a true hatred for offending God!
“Repent, therefore, and be converted [turn to God to help hate and stop the sin], that your sins may be wiped away” (Acts 3:19).
Sadly, most are so far from truly repenting, so far from a saving faith, like was sand, we won’t even admit to bounds of our sins. Our pride is too great.
Please understand, we are suffering from an “enormity of sin” as the saints, like St. Leonard of Port Maurice, teach (The Hidden Treasure, Ch. 5) teaches. Yet, just ONE we don’t grow in faith into gaining true sorrow/true hatred for is deadly. Oh, we are dying. We are complacent with our sinfulness, and that complacency with sin shows we love sin over LOVING GOD.
Tragically, as St. Aquinas, Doctor of the Church, in his Summa Theologica (I q.23, art.8), teaches us “those who are saved are in the minority”… even though God sends us so much mercy and wants us all in Heaven. Sadly, we reject His mercy from our great love for sin.
“Many, I tell you, will attempt to enter [Heaven] but will not be strong enough [for we lack a saving faith]” (Luke 13:23-24).
Can we now see why there are so “few” who are saved? “Many are invited but FEW are chosen” (Matthew 22:14), because few of us love God enough to sincerely want to stop offending Him. Yes, we are rejecting Christ’s mercy for sin. Truly, “God will smite the head… of those who persist in their sins” (Psalm 68:21). Believe!
No Fear – No Life
Therefore, since one sin is of infinite offence to our infinitely perfect Lord, we should greatly fear sin and it’s consequences. We should fear sin not only because if we don’t truly repent of any sin, we are damned, or because if we stay in our sins, we will suffer greatly on earth as a direct consequence or as a punishment (to awaken us to our need to change), but we should especially fear sin, since each sin increases Our Lord’s agony at His crucifixion, and wounds His Most Sacred Heart of Love in Heaven.
“He was pierced for our sins, crushed for our iniquity” (Isaiah 53:5).
Yes, as was said, our sins not only cause us suffering on earth and damn us, but they greatly injure Our Lord. “The Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth… and it grieved him to his heart”(Genesis 6:5-6). Do we want to grieve God to His heart? We must stop our sins.
Every one of our and others sins offends Our Lord, whom we are supposed to be loving, not causing such horrible anguish. St. Anthony Mary Claret teaches in his book “The Golden Key to Heaven” that, “a single sin arouses in Thee [God] a nausea, a horror and an infinite displeasure… And a venial sin… contains in itself so much malice that one should not commit it, not even if thereby he could save… all the inhabitants of the world.” This is how horrible a single sin is.
Now, tell me, how can we truly love God if we aren’t horrified that we are sinning against Him? We can’t.
“Love is NEVER without fear, but it is godly fear.”
–St. Bernard of Clairvaux, Doctor of The Church (On Loving God, Ch.14)
Yet, from the devils deception, because of our pride, we think we truly love God even though we find no real horror in sinning.
Satan wants us blind and dumb… going to church thinking we are “holy”… saved because of what we do, so we won’t know reality, so we won’t seek Our Savior to change us, and then we will die believing a lie and belong to the devil for eternity.
Tragically, we have such little fear of sinning, such little love for God, if we can be honest with ourselves, we will know we have spent our lives hardly caring at all about our sins… since we are so far from saints: someone who has truly left their life of sin to love God.
Yet, “a fearful thing is sin, fearful, and the ruin of the soul” as St. John Chrysostom, Doctor of the Church tells us in his homily on The Gospel of John 5:14. Truly, who of us fears to sin and is really working
Oh, we live in a world so deceived, we simply aren’t with the mind set of never wanting to offending God again… so we can love Him. No. The world tries its best to strip us of any fear of sinning against God, as if fear is bad. Of course, some fear is bad… like fearing what God allows to occur in our lives, not trusting in Him and His will as leading to good, but we absolutely must fear that we are offending God.
“A soul’s motion in flight from them [sin] is called fear“ as St. Augustine, Doctor of the Church, teaches “On Faith, Hope, and Love” (Ch 8. #24). Without fearing sin and its consequences against ourselves, others and God there is no life in us… no motivation to really do what is necessary to turn away from evil and do good, so God’s mercy can change our hearts and give us a saving faith of true love/true contrition for all of our sins.
“Who would not fear to offend a God who punishes so rigorously [for each sin is so serious]? ‘Who shall not fear Thee, O King of nations?’ (Jer. 10:7)”
–St. Ignatus of Lyolola (Spiritual Exercises, Ex. #3)
Only those who have fallen into the devil’s trap, who don’t understand sin and it’s consequences, have no fear of offending God. We need to seek Mercy–yes, Mercy, because it is only by His mercy that we are even alive today, since one sin is so offensive it makes us deserving of the greatest torments in Hell, which Mercy is giving us a chance to escape so to Live. Therefore, we need Mercy to teach and give us a great horror for sin, so we can one day truly love Him.
“I learned in the depths of my soul how horrible sin was, even the smallest sin, and how much it tormented the soul of Jesus. I would rather suffer a thousand hells than commit even the smallest venial sin. “
–St. Faustina, (Diary # 1016)
Yes, we need a heart like St. Faustina. But horribly, from being so deceived, we aren’t seeking this. It is unbelievable, what we “Christians” are doing to Our Beloved Lord. How we are doing so little, if anything, to help others or even ourselves to stop offending Him. Nobody is even telling us of the horrific consequences of sin, to warn us so we can change, since the world is in darkness from our great will/desire to sin.
“They [Christians] crucify me on the wood [the cross] through their WILL TO SIN.”
–Jesus to St. Bridget of Sweden (Revelations, Ch. 30)
We need to become men of a good will… who have a true will to do good. Oh, but we want to sin so greatly, we have such a great will to sin, we put forth little, if any, effort into stopping. HORRIBLE!
“You must purify your soul from all inclination to [mortal and] venial sin;—that is to say, you must not voluntarily retain any deliberate intention of permitting yourself to commit any [mortal or] venial sin whatever. It would be most unworthy consciously to admit [accept] anything so displeasing to God, as THE WILL TO OFFEND HIM.”
–St. Francis of Sales, Doctor of the Church, (Introduction to the Devout Life, Ch. 22)
Yes, we must become not only become truly resolved to never offend God again, we must loose our desire/our will to offend Him. Our heart must TRULY HATE SIN: loose its longing for each and every sin, and to do this we need much fear… much grace from God.
Sure, for some, when we first came to know God, we were excited and grew in faith. We might have left some of our sins, but now we are lukewarm (staying the same) complacent with our lessor sins. Or perhaps we are leaving some of our sins even today, but our hearts aren’t really striving to leave all of them. We are just leaving what we see as harming our lives. We are not leaving the ones we think little of, nor the ones we pretend like they aren’t even sins, nor the ones we greatly cling to… the ones that will damn us. To do what is necessary to come to truly hate them, we need great fear to move us!
But sadly, as a result of the world removing our life–our fear, our concern for salvation–we aren’t seeking Mercy for grace daily to help enlighten us to our sinfulness, so we can gain a true hatred for our offences and stop committing them. Tragically, we aren’t growing towards a saving faith, and we are dying from our love for sin.
Oh, we wound God so greatly, and we just don’t care! Where is our love for God? Oh, the devil has stolen it.
Again, please tell me, how can we sincerely hate any sin if we aren’t working hard to amend it? We can’t. Therefore, if we aren’t striving to become “perfect, just as your Heavenly Father is perfect” (Matthew 5:48), truly striving to stop all of our sins, removing them one by one—seeking “perfect maturity” (Philippians 3:12), so we can never offend God again, then now is the time to change. This must be our goal. Because as we now know, having a lack of true love for God… a lack of true contrition–a lack of resolve to amend any sin–kills.
“[Those who] wish to be saved as imperfect souls, shall not be saved.”
–Pope St. Gregory the Great, Doctor of the Church, (Dignity and Duties of the Priest, St. Liguori, Injury Done to the Priest by Tepidity, II)
Yes, we must strive to stop ALL of our sins… to become “perfect.” That is why, St. Anthony Mary Claret was explaining to nuns in his autobiography (#714) about how they must “seek to be perfect [without sin] if they were going to be saved”… not to just read the Bible and study it… living some of it, thinking that lukewarm living is acceptable, but truly seek Mercy for grace to perfectly live it… to become saints… just like Christ.
Truly, we aren’t saved if we become a priest or a nun. Remember, we aren’t saved by what we do. We must humble ourselves. It is our pride that tries to convince us otherwise. Becoming a priest or a nun only assists us in obtaining the goal, IF we are correctly seeking it.
Yet, how many people do we see who are really striving to perfectly live the faith, who are flying from their sins towards becoming true self-sacrificing saints, so they can accept God’s forgiving mercy which saves, since they have a great hatred for their offences against God? Is there anyone?
And yet, we live lives as if everyone dies and goes to Heaven? This is just so horrible. We don’t know we are rejecting God for sin. We don’t know we are damning our souls. We don’t know we lack true sorrow for our sins.
Oh, Christians aren’t saving souls. We are deceived, and we are deceiving others. Yes, we are not saving souls; we are killing them. Where is the concern for our or our neighbor’s salvation? How are we warning them of what is to come if we don’t change? Where is our understanding of The Truth? We don’t have it. Again, the devil has stolen it.
“Nothing is more frigid than a Christian, who cares not for the salvation of others.”
–St. John Chrysostom, Doctor of the Church (Homily 20, Acts of the Apostles)
Yes, the devil has deceived us so greatly, we only care about making others happy on earth. We have no concern with their eternal lives. Sure some might think we are doing things for the salvation of others, but we don’t even know what it takes to be saved. We aren’t seeking God to give others a saving faith of true contrition for their sins. We are not preaching nor living The Truth.
We are wounding God in unsurmountable ways through our blatant disobedience. The children Jesus died to save, so we could spend eternity in Heaven with Him, are rejecting Him for sin and being lost forever. This is beyond tragic!
“They [Christians] are worse than those who crucified my Son, for the Jews did it for the sake of envy and because they did not know that he was God, but these [Christians] know him to be God, and yet, in their own malice and presumption [presuming they are saved] and greed [want of the world’s pleasures and sin], they crucify him spiritually more cruelly than the Jews did physically. For they themselves have been redeemed [baptized/forgiven], but the Jews had not yet been redeemed. Therefore, my bride, [don’t reject your redemption] obey my Son and FEAR HIM, for just as he is merciful, he is also JUST.”
–The Mother of God to St. Bridget of Sweden (Revelations Ch.37)
We Are Saved by Faith–Obedience–Trust in Christ (The Word)
To receive grace from God to grow in faith to obtain true contrition for offending Him–a saving faith–is done by obeying Him. We are saved by obedience to Jesus–Our Savior. Please know, we are not supposed to obey the “law” thinking we are saved by obedience to a law. No. “A man is not justified by observance of the law” (Galatians 2:16).
We aren’t obeying just a “law”, from the fear of our “Disciplinarian” (Galatians 3:24-25) punishing us… well, in the beginning of our conversion towards Life… yes, we will obey out of fear of punishment (servile fear), because we lack the grace to do any better.
It takes much grace to think selflessly and be willing to do what it takes to leave our sins–to come to truly hate our offences we have been spending our life time loving–from only being concerned with the fact that our sins offend God. Having the fear Our Lord will say to us, “Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire” (Matthew 51:41), since we never grew to truly love God is our initial motivation.
But to be saved, we must GROW IN FAITH to obey the “law” because we desire to perfectly love God… to not offend Him again (filial fear)… our self-concern (wanting to be saved) over loving God must leave. Yes, our love for God must become pure… no self-love attached to it, or at least, we must love God more than ourselves.
“For those who desire Eternal Life, a pure love… is necessary, for it is not enough for eternal life to fly sin [to leave sin] from fear of punishment [servile fear/attrition], or to embrace virtue from the motive of one’s own advantage [to experience God’s love/to feel like we are good people (to build up our pride)/mercenary love].
Sin should be abandoned because it is displeasing to Me, and virtue should be loved for My sake [to LOVE GOD/filial fear/true contrition].”
–God the Father to St. Catherine of Sienna, (A Treatise of Discretion)
Again, we aren’t obeying just a “law”, we are obeying Christ, who is The Law, Our Savior–“The Word [who] became flesh” (John 1:14)… not just some “rules” from fear if we don’t obey we will perish. No, we are obeying Christ since, The Law is Christ.
Therefore, we live the Law of love, from having FAITH in God’s Word (Jesus), knowing that by persevering in striving for perfect obedience to God–following His Word (our directions to Life)– that He can save us. We trust that Jesus can change our hearts, which have spent our lives:
- Loving ourselves over Him (doing what we want and not what God wants),
- Loving our sins instead of loving Him (habitually committing sin without seeking Mercy for strength nor working hard to change), and
- Loving/desiring the world’s pleasures for happiness–our idols—instead of finding our happiness in loving Him (seeking out things of the world–anything that isn’t God or His will–to fill our desire for self-love)…
…into hearts of true hatred for our will, for sin and for our idols, so we can desire Him alone.
We know, when we allow Jesus to change our hearts, by striving for obedience to Him, we will obtain enough grace to have true love for God – a saving faith- which can embrace His saving forgiving mercy He died to give us.
Yes, this is true faith in Jesus… not all of the other lies that are preached… and certainly not believing Christ can save/forgive us if we just “say” we are sorry for our sins when we still lack true contrition for them. That is a lie that is damning us.
But rather true faith is believing/trusting that Christ can, at least at the hour of our death, give us a saving faith/true sorrow IF we are sincerely resolved/working hard to hate our sins, amend our lives and follow Christ (live His Word/become like Him) and persist to the end. This is what we hope for and what is explained in this article.
“The gospel is the power of God leading everyone who believes in it [enough to live it] to salvation” (Romans 1:16).
Yes, those who are saved have “purified your souls by your obedience to the truth [Christ/The Word]” (1 Peter 1:22) through. This is the true faith. It is our faith in Christ, not only believing that He is Lord, who died to give us forgiveness of our sins, but believing that–living His Word–saves: changes our hearts into hearts of TRUE contrition, so we can accept and keep the forgiveness He suffered so greatly for us to have. Praise God!
“If you wish to enter into life, keep the commandments [the entire Word]” (Matthew 19:17).
If we follow another lukewarm doctrine and don’t follow The True Way that the saints traveled to Heaven, we will die. Please don’t be deceived. “There are some who are confusing you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ [don’t follow them]” (Galatians 1:7). God wants you in Heaven.
There is Endless Deception
The devil has embedded his poison so deep within us, we want to do the right thing, but we just don’t know what that is. From the devil being so successful, there are now endless deceptions all around us.
“If you live according to the flesh [desiring sin and the world], you will die [go to Hell]; but if by the Spirit [desiring what is holy] you put to death the deeds of the body [you will stop your unrestrained habitual sins and come to truly hate sin, then], you will live [go to Heaven]” (Romans 8:13).
We can clearly see that we aren’t really living by The Spirit “desiring what is holy” and are still living according to the flesh or we wouldn’t be committing all of these unrestrained habitual sins and suffering with such worries and complaints when things go wrong. We apparently don’t sincerely trust in God’s will: believing all God allows is meant to lead us to good IF we learn, grow and change through the cross… waiting and trusting for God’s blessing for us.
“Do not puzzle over events which happen or wonder why such and such things occur, but take them all thankfully from God’s hands, trusting firmly that He watches over you and all men, and will never permit anything to happen but for our greater good, however little we may understand it.”
–St. John of Avila (Letter 2, #33)
Oh, we might think we desire what is holy and trust in God, but our actions–our lack of becoming saints— is proving us to be liars.
Sure, we might desire some things that are holy, but that isn’t what is damning us; it is all we desire that isn’t holy that is. Remember, one sin (anything a saint wouldn’t do), one thing that we want that isn’t “holy” rejects God for sin and chooses Hell for eternity if we don’t truly repent of it. Please, really think about what I have just said… look at all you do and want and feel… all that isn’t holy–all that a true saint wouldn’t do–is killing you. Please don’t be deceived. Eternity is forever!
Of course, even if we can see a few things we do, want or feel that aren’t holy, we will still have to learn about what is really holy, because when we become darkened to The Truth like we have become, right from wrong, good from bad, humility from pride, are now blurred… but we just won’t know it. This is true. We will think we obviously know what is sinful and prideful, but I promise you, if we have been deceived and blinded as to what truly saves, we won’t know good from evil in many ways. We can’t know. We have pushed away the grace that provides us with such understanding.
“I pity you, because sin has blinded you, and does not allow you to see the danger in which you are of dying at any moment, and of going to burn in an abyss of fire for all eternity!”
–St. Alphonsus, Doctor of the Church (The Exercise of the Missions, Ch 1)
I know this is VERY HARD for someone to understand, especially if we have vastly studied the faith and are considered its “faithful” or its “teachers”. Yet, trust me, even theologians, have to humbly learn what is truly good. We have been greatly blinded and deceived.
We are going to have to learn how to re-think everything, because everything we have been taught on how to find happiness and success (the worldly way of building up our self-esteem/confidence), we will need to leave. We are going to have to stop learning how to believe and trust in ourselves and lose our pride, so we can come to gain “self-hatred” as St. Catherine of Gennoa and all of the saints possessed.
Yes, a hatred our sinful self we need, so we can believe and trust in God alone… truly believing we are nothing… “nothing but sin” (St. Alphonsus, True Spouse of Jesus Christ, Holy Humility, Ch. 11 )… who needs God to do everything through us, looking for Our Lord to fill us with His grace, so He can teach, strengthen and guide us to Life. Trusting in Our Savior, not ourselves to do it. To learn more please read, “How to Stop Sinning?”
We will have to learn how to “distinguish between the different types of thoughts that come to us: those that are good, those sent by God… and those that are evil [inspired by our nature, our sinful impulses/desires, or satan himself]” as St. Diadochus of Photice taught on “Spiritual Perfection.” This will be hard at first, since we probably have never even looked into what or why we are thinking what we do. From only knowing how to live by our pride, this will be a complete change, as discussed later. But with God’s grace, knowing we need to change (having some humility), we can do this.
Frankly, the deception that lives in us branches out to every facet of the faith. This darkness we live in has, believe it or not, distorted the whole faith. This is the truth. The following are a just a few of the topics the devil has confused us with to keep us blind, which are discussed in this article.
Sadly, we no longer correctly understand:
- Fear of the Lord
- Giving Glory to God
- Love of the Cross
- Trust in God
- God’s Will
- How To Love Others as God loves Us
- and so much more…
Oh, we might think we understand these things correctly, but, just like I’m sure we thought we understood how to be saved correctly, we are truly being deceived with all of these too–yes, a deceiving power has come over us with ALL of the above to some degree and much more.
What the devil has done is truly terrifying. The anti-christ has infiltrated all of our lives and in every way to some degree and has destroyed our understanding of the true faith. To learn more please read, “What Does Evil Look Like?”
We must seek Mercy to stamp the anti-christ out so he no longer has control of us.
“The apostasy [the abandonment of the true faith] comes first [before the second coming of Christ] and the lawless one [the anti-christ] is revealed… claiming that he is a god [through all the world’s pleasures (the people, power, & possessions/our idols) we seek instead of the true God]…
And then the lawless one will be revealed [as is happening now], whom the Lord will kill [at then end of time] with the breath of his mouth and render powerless by the manifestation of his coming [so we will never sin again and finally worship God without fear (of offending God or dying from our sins)]…
[But for us, who left The Truth for the anti-christ (don’t desire God but sin & the world’s pleasures),] God is sending them a deceiving power so that they may [continue to] believe the lie, that all who have not believed the truth but have approved wrongdoing may be condemned” (2 Thessalonians 2:3-12).
But, for us, we don’t need to remain in the dark, believing the lie, since the “gospel is veiled, it is veiled for those who are perishing” (2 Corinthians 4:3), thinking sin is good anymore and be condemned. God, from His infinite mercy, is giving us a wonderful blessing of bringing His light–even a “seven times greater [light]” (Isaiah 30:26) than what was shown before to us–so we may see all of what the evil one has darkened. Yes, a great light of God will show us The Way, so we can join Him again. Therefore, let’s allow God to enlighten us, so He can save our souls.
“The Lord said: Since this people draws near with words only and honors me with their lips alone, though their hearts are far from me [since they really desire sin and the world: the anti-christ]. And fear of me has become mere precept of human teaching [yet they think they are faithful]. Therefore I will again deal with this people in surprising and wondrous fashion: The wisdom of the wise [the wisdom of the teachers… the “faithful”] shall perish…
Surely [however], in a very little while [after this great darkness], Lebanon [the Church] shall be changed into an orchard, and the orchard be considered a forest! On that day the deaf shall hear the words of a scroll [this article]; And out of gloom and darkness, the eyes of the blind shall see” (Isaiah 29:11-18).
Therefore, please hear God speaking to you. He wants to open your eyes… God wants you in Heaven.
We don’t need to continue to live this way of sin and be banished to where the “smoke of the fire that torments them will rise forever and ever, and there will be no relief day or night” (Revelations 14:11).
It is time to convert and then tell the world of our great error and of Our Savior who desires to save us: to change us… to give us true hatred for our sins so we can have real hope for Eternal Life.
“[After God’s children learn of how they have fallen into the trap of the anti-christ] go up on to a high mountain [speak to the whole world], Zion, [God’s children, I am a] herald of glad tidings; cry out at the top of your voice, Jerusalem, [God’s chosen ones; I am a] herald of good news!… Here is your God!.. Like a shepherd he feeds his flock; in his arms he gathers the lambs, carrying them in his bosom, and leading the ewes with care [you will not be left alone to die; He will show you The Way–LOOK FOR HIM]” (Isaiah 40:9&11).
Our Lord is calling out for His children. He wants to save us. Let’s learn where we are going wrong–which is a lot–so we can allow God to change us, so we can be with the “few.” Eternity is forever! What is more important than this?
I know, perhaps we haven’t robbed any banks or killed anyone lately… but that doesn’t mean we are saved–forgiven of All of our wrong doings. Truly, sin and what is expected of us is so much more than we think. And obtaining forgiveness for ALL of our sins is much more challenging than we might understand too. We can’t continue to believe the “false teachers” (2 Peter 2:1). They are killing us.
The Devil Has Us Living Lukewarm Lives
You see, the devil doesn’t want us to know of our great need to change. Oh, but we need to fully understand that even though God loves us and wants to forgive us, it is our actions that are rejecting God’s love and forgiveness. “It is your crimes that separate you from your God” (Isaiah 59:2).
Sure, we might not think our sins are great enough to separate us from God and/or that we have true sorrow for them, but the deceiver is “prowling around like a roaring lion looking for [someone] to devour” (1 Peter 5:8)… trying to keep us blind and damned. Beware!
Truly, God’s unfathomable mercy wants to forgive us and save our souls–“[He] desires everyone to be saved” (1 Timothy 2:4), but WE PUSH HIM AWAY because we want our sins instead Him. Sadly, we don’t believe in Jesus enough–that He is The Way–to seek Him for help, to follow Him (obey His Word) and to do what is necessary to come to hate all the sins which are rejecting Him.
Sadly, there is a whole population of poor deceived souls, who think forgiveness is received when we simply “confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9). Well, of course, we could be forgiven and saved IF our confession of faith that we made was true. But simply confessing with our mouth that Jesus is Lord, when the confession we make is from hardened hearts of self-love… is only blaspheme, not a declaration of true faith.
“The Lord forgives all who repent — if, that is, their repentance brings them into God’s unity [if their repentance is true]… I put my confidence in the grace of Jesus Christ. He will release you from all your chains [if you allow Him].”
–St. Ignatius of Antioch, (Letter to the to the Philadelphians #8)
But reality is, we aren’t running to confession–the sacrament given to us by God to help us remove our sins–daily, weekly or even monthly to assist us. This sacrament is hardly even available anymore in the Church. It surely isn’t found daily before Mass anymore. No; one must struggle to obtain it even once a week and since most don’t want carry a burden to receive the sacrament, we don’t partake in it.
Even if we do attend confession, our confessions of faith are far from true because, if we are changing, it is so little and it is only with the sins we feel necessary to amend, moving so slowly from such a small faith. But to be saved our faith must GROW into a great saving faith. Our Goal must be perfection– to “be imitators of God” (Ephesians 5:1) if we want our confession of faith to be true. “Whoever claims to abide in him [to be with a saving faith] ought to live [just] as he lived.” (1 John 2:6).
But the evil one wants us praising God in our words, but being lukewarm in our actions–not really seeking to become saints… to live just as He lived–but desiring all sorts of sinful and worldly things, not living for God and His will but for our own desires, all along thinking we are saved. He doesn’t want us concerned with salvation…. and he certainly doesn’t want us to seek Jesus to save us, so we can grow into a saving faith and then into beautiful saints.
No. Satan doesn’t want us to stop offending God. He wants us complacent with our sins… thinking we are saved by just “saying” we believe, even though our actions are far from living the faith we claim we believe in…. yet again, “such faith has no power to save” (James 2:14).
The evil one wants us to be deceived into thinking we have true belief in Christ, so we won’t really know of our need for Mercy nor work hard to receive grace, so we can grow into true faith. Perhaps the devil is convincing us, we are saved no matter what we do, since God loves us unconditionally and His mercy is so great… even though The Word says, “If you do not repent, you will all perish as they did!” (Luke 13:3).
Oh, the devil wants us to continue to believe that obtaining salvation is easy… just avoid a few sins and bam “we are saved”… even though The Word says “the road is HARD that leads to Life” (Matthew 7:14), so we will continue to live lukewarm lives, not truly repenting nor changing… not growing into self-sacrificing saints… even though The Word says, “we are called to be saints [true followers of Christ]” (1 Corinthians).
Yes, the evil one doesn’t want us to seek Our Savior to remove our great will/desire for sin (to save us), so we can all die (go to Hell)… even though The Word says, “if we willfully persist in sin [have unrestrained habitually sin] after having received the knowledge of the truth [come of the age to sin], there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins [since we reject His forgiveness and atonement from our desire for the sin/our lack of contrition], but a fearful prospect of judgment, and a fury of fire [hell] that will consume the adversaries [awaits us, if we don’t repent and change].” (Hebrews 10:26-27).
“See how great is the blindness of man… and the more they are enlightened by the Holy Scripture, the greater are their obligations and more intolerable confusion do they receive for not fulfilling them… Theirs is the fate of the false Christian, who is placed in Hell in greater torment than a pagan, because he had the light of faith and renounced it, while the pagan never had it.”
–God the Father to St. Catherine of Siena, Doctor of the Church (Treatise of Prayer)
Please don’t stay in the devil’s trap and continue to live as a false Christian thinking we are saved, from any number of justifications we have been deceived into believing, as to why it isn’t necessary to sincerely strive to live the faith–to obey The Word and to sanctify our souls… to “make every effort to be found without stain or defilement” (2 Peter 3:14).
“Have you sought to deceive yourself by foolish reasonings on the justice of God and on His mercy? Have you not sought to persuade yourself that sin is not so great an evil–that God is too good to punish you?
–St. Ignatius of Loyola, (Spiritual Exercises, The Punishment of Sin)
Oh, we must, “act carefully, for with the Lord, our God, there is no injustice” (2 Chronicles 19:7).
“[Since The Father] judges each one impartially according to his deeds, conduct yourselves with fear [of punishment] throughout the time of your exile [so you may not suffer as a result of your sins].” (1 Peter 1:17).
Truly, if we don’t come to hear, we will reject God’s saving love because we aren’t becoming saints (someone who truly never wants to offend God again).
“Repent, therefore, and be converted [leave sin/live The Word], that your sins may be wiped away” (1 Timothy 2:4).
Truly, “the righteous shall live by faith [obedience to Christ/living for His will]” (1 Peter 3:11) so they can one day love God “with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength” (Mark 12:30).
This pretending like salvation is easy to obtain is killing us. This false teaching, of presuming everyone is saved, is preventing us from doing what is necessary for Christ to save our and our loved one’s souls. Oh, it is hard to come to truly hate all of these sins we have spent our life time loving. Please don’t be deceived!
“[Tragically, we] almost entirely neglect our eternal salvation… the devil is most diligent in his endeavors to bring them [us] to eternal ruin… after this short life, another life awaits us, which will be either eternally happy or eternally miserable. [What are you working hard to obtain?]”
–St. Alphonsus, Doctor of the Church, (The Way of Salvation and Perfection, Med. 31)
We simply must come to know that by Jesus’ sacrifice, we have been forgiven of our sins—“He is expiation for our sins” (1 John 2:2)—but this unmerited gift that welcomes us into Heaven, horribly, we are REJECTING. God is forlorn! We must change!
Yes, Our Lord came to “give his life as a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45), for all of us who became baptized into the faith, but what have we done with this gift? Horribly, we have refused it… since we have chosen sin instead.
Oh, we have been invited to the wedding banquet–Heaven–but most of us have made excuses, or have not even tried to attend. We have neglected to work hard and purify our garments (our souls). Sadly, we have chosen to spend our lives doing other things and have spurned Eternal Life, since we are stained with unrepentant sin.
Please don’t be deceived. Our and our neighbors’ souls are dying. We must do something about this; we must save our souls. So please humbly listen for God is speaking to you. Our eternity is everything! Don’t allow the devil to blind and kill you. God wants you in Heaven! Now is the time to change.
“That gate [to Life] is narrow. They who desire to enter in that way are FEW, while those who desire the joys that come by it [from God] are many [they just never obtain it].”
–St. John of the Cross, Doctor of the Church, (A Spiritual Canticle, Stanza XXXVL)
Are You Striving to Become a Real Saint?
Is our goal to become a real self-sacrificing saint: someone who doesn’t want to be loved, but wants to love… someone who doesn’t want others to be kind to us, but seeks to be kind to others, especially to those who are unkind to us… someone who wants to carry the cross (suffer and sacrifice), so God can send grace from that love, for the salvation of others souls–to help move others towards a saving faith of true love for God/true contrition for our sins?
Reality is, we aren’t working hard to become saints–not real saints and as a result, we are dying. Yes, as said before, “we are called to be saints [true followers of Christ]” (1 Corinthians).
Please know, people who don’t want to sin and want to love God, will be becoming a real self-sacrificing saint, not just a “good” person. This is true.
How can we say we want to stop our sins and follow Christ–that we believe in Christ enough to do what He would do, knowing following Him is The Way to Heaven/a saving faith–if we don’t even strive to become a real saint: someone who has left the world and its pleasures to love and serve God and desires to never offend Him again? What kind of faith would we have?
“The soul that follows and imitates Him more and more becomes more and more like Him… In imitation of the Son of God, the God-Man, the children of God are to work away at their salvation [to lose their desire for sin so to gain a true love for God/a saving faith].”
–St. Maximilian Kolbe, (Will to Love, Christ Transforms Us)
Yes, if we want Eternal Life, we must conform our lives to that of Christ… that is how He transforms our hearts. “We MUST grow up in every way into him” (Ephesians 4:15).
“Be[ing] conformed to the image of his Son” (Romans 8:29), by way of the cross, is how we learn to lose our love for sin: our will, our pride, our self-love, and everything else that keeps us from being like Christ (all of those horrible habitual sins), which is how we gain true contrition for our offences and true love for God. Then, we won’t reject His saving grace He died to give us, but embrace it. Christ is the one we must follow. Jesus must be our God— Our Savior.
Therefore, what do we do that Christ wouldn’t? What sins won’t we leave so to become a real saint? What pleasures of the world won’t we give up–that aren’t God’s will… you know the vanity, the self-love and the self-indulgences that we partake in–that a true saint would never do? What is keeping us from becoming a real self-sacrificing saint who only seeks to serve God and help save souls… just like Christ did? Those are what are killing us. Please know, “the one who is self-indulgent is dead” (1 Timothy 5:6). Saints don’t indulge; they choose the cross… and love it. We need to seek this kind of faith too.
Sure some of us will “say” we are wanting to become a saint, but we only want to become one of those lukewarm saints, not a true saint… not one who seeks perfection: strives to “not sin any more” (John 14:15) and lives for the cross: joyful suffers and sacrifices pleasures, who “rejoice[s] in my sufferings” (Colossians 1:24), so God can send grace to others from our acts of love for the salvation of souls, like the real saints have done before us (as explained later).
“A Friend of the Cross is one who[s]… heart is raised above all that is transient and perishable [wants nothing of the world], and his homeland is in heaven… Those Christians you see everywhere, fashionably dressed, fastidious in manner, full of importance and dignity, are not real disciples, real members of Christ crucified.
To think they are would be an insult to our thorn-crowned Head and to the truth of the Gospel. How many so-called Christians imagine they are members of our Saviour when in reality they are his treacherous persecutors, for while they make the sign of the cross with their hand, in their hearts they are its enemies [loving the world and its pleasures]!
If you are guided by the same spirit [as Christ], if you live with the same life as Jesus, your thorn-crowned Head, you must expect only thorns, lashes and nails; that is, nothing but the cross [suffering and sacrificing]; for the disciple must be treated like the master…
If you are not willing to suffer gladly like Jesus [for the salvation of souls], or patiently like the penitent thief [knowing God is using the cross to change us], then you will have to suffer like the unrepentant thief.”
–St. Louis De Montfort (Letter to the Friends of the Cross, Part 1)
But we don’t really want to be like Christ nor like the penitent sinner. We don’t want to suffer, so Christ can save us through the cross.
We just want to be a saint who prays a lot and does many “good” works… but we are doing them with hearts that still don’t LOVE GOD…. with hearts that still don’t sincerely want to stop sinning nor want the cross, because we still love our sins and the world and all of its pleasures and don’t really believe the cross is the way to Christ.
Those who truly hate their sins and want to follow Christ, one by one leave their sins, reject the world’s pleasures they crave (their idols), grow in love with the cross (knowing it saves), and gain virtue and more virtue (qualities of Christ)… never stopping, from a complacency with any sin, until they grow into a perfect self-sacrificing saint.
But we don’t want to sacrifice and suffer–deny ourselves of what we want and take up our crosses– for the salvation of souls like Christ and the true saints have done, nor do we want to work hard to stop sinning… not to really stop offending God… not to really become like Him.
“Whoever wishes to come after me MUST deny himself [don’t follow his will of self-love], take up his cross [don’t complaint about suffering], and follow me [become like Christ]” (Matthew 16:24).
Sadly, we just want to continue doing “good” or what we think is “good” thinking that somehow makes up for our sins. But please know, it isn’t the good we do that is going to damn us, but, again, it is the bad we don’t truly repent of that will. Remember, we aren’t saved by what we do.
Tragically, despite how “good” we are, we still desire so much of the world (idols), hate endless healing crosses of Christ, and are still remaining in many of our sins. Now, instead of being filled with God and His love (His saving grace), we have filled our hearts with sin and the world.
“The soul that has denied and thrust away from itself the pleasures which come from all these things [delight from the sense of hearing, sight, smell, & food/taste] and has mortified its desire with respect to them [removed our want for them from self-discipline], may be said… [has] an emptiness within itself of all things [and can now receive God].”
–St. John of the Cross (Ascent of Mt. Carmel, Ch. 3 #2)
Sadly, we are far from being empty of the world’s delights; we have so many passions for things of this world and have filled ourselves/our hearts with the desire for the world and sin and as a result, we only have room for a small amount of God in our hearts, which has actually caused us to forgot what a true saint really is. This is true. Now, we don’t really know what we should be doing to be a real Christian (as explained later).
Our Obvious Failures To Love
Even though, from being so deceived, we can’t see many of our failures to love, we still should be able to see plenty of our more obvious failures to act like Christ. If we can be honest with ourselves, all we need to do is just look at our lives. Look at what we are doing with our time. Sure some of it perhaps we give to God, but what about the rest?
Do we think Christ gave only part of His life to do the Father’s will and the rest He gave to the pursuit of the world’s pleasures? No; He didn’t sin and gave ALL of His life for the salvation of souls, and did nothing for self-love. This must be our goal too.
We are called to live for Christ… not ourselves. The saints have done this and have lived lives of great peace and happiness… loving God. Yet, we think if we don’t have the world’s pleasures, we will be miserable, since we have made them our god (what we need for happiness). Surly, we know only God truly satisfies the longings of the heart, but do we really believe it. Not really, since so much of our lives is set on getting our will, the world, and even sin for happiness… so to love ourselves and not God?
“When [the] Antichrist has come [and confused us as to The Way to Heaven], the pursuit of unlawful pleasures shall be more eager among the transgressors… Not for this purpose did you receive [money], that you should spend it on luxury [nice food, clothes, cars, homes, things, entertainment, relaxation, etc.], but that you should lay it out on alms [giving to the needy].”
–St. John Chrysostom, Doctor of the Church (Homily on Matthew 24:33-34)
Perhaps, we don’t have the money to obtain anything but the bare necessities or maybe we even lack that. Yet, please don’t think we are without suffering from this sin. If we wished we had nice meals, stylish clothes, a luxury car, a great home, nice things, thrilling entertainment and/or fine relaxing vacations, then we are just as guilty as those who are seeking out and partaking in those things.
If our hearts desire anything but God and His will, if we desire/long for anything that Christ or a saint wouldn’t partake in, even if we don’t actually partake in them, we are still guilty of idolatry (wanting the world for happiness). We must come to “hate our idols” and seek God and His will alone… not want what we don’t have (live in envy).
“People sin against me even now in the world in the same way [they did in Egypt]. First, they honor and worship an idol: for they love the world and all the things in it more than me, who am their Creator. Therefore, the world is their god, and not I. For I said in my gospel: “Where a man’s treasure is, there his heart is also.” So, mankind’s treasure is the world, since their HEARTS YEARNS TOWARDS IT AND NOT TO ME.
Therefore, just as the Jews fell in the desert… so too shall these people fall… and they shall live in damnation without end [since they rejected me for the world].”
–Jesus to St. Bridget of Sweden (Revelations, Ch. 53)
What does ours heart yearn for? If we come home from work and we don’t crave to be with God in prayer, even if we are hungry and tired, but we crave perhaps a good dinner, a tv show and/or relaxation with something other than God… then something is really wrong with our faith.
Now I’m not saying we can’t ever partake in anything of pleasure in the world. Sure we can, that is, IF it is necessary and helps us to know, love and serve God (doesn’t lead us into sin), but if we desire/seek it instead of God and His will, like sadly we do with most everything, that makes it all idols.
But beware, when we love our idols greatly, once we find out there is a way we can continue in them (thinking it is needed), we will LIE to ourselves and convince ourselves we “need” to have or do some self-loving pleasure because we are deceiving ourselves into thinking it helps us to know, love and serve God. Oh, I have seen it time and time again. It is very hard for some of us to be honest with ourselves, and acknowledge our idols when we simply don’t want to leave them. Beware!
Therefore, what does our hearts really yearn towards? If there is any ONE thing that isn’t God and His will, then that is a deadly idol… that is what we are choosing over God and His saving love. Please don’t be deceived. Yes, we have a lot to change.
Nonetheless, outside of our idols/attachments… what about what comes out of our mouths? Are we like the saints and it is mostly silence, only speaking when necessary–since we are in prayer with God–and that of love for another… or is it foul, dirty, full of negativity, gossip, idol chatter or complaints (wanting our will)?
“Bear patiently all annoyances, contradictions, abuse and hard words sent you by God to try you: suffer them cheerfully and even desire them [for they can make you like Christ]; be resigned and do not let your soul rebel against them.”
–St. John of Avila (Letter 2, #8)
How about what we listen to or watch? Is it really pure, helping us to know, love and serve God… done according to His will (not ours)? Or does it leave us with impurity or distractions in our minds preventing us from being with God throughout our day in prayer and leading us into sin.
I tell you, any part of our lives that is not what a true saint would do, that isn’t necessary, that isn’t to love God, done for His honor and glory–is offending God… whom we should be loving. We must seek Mercy to help us hate and leave it all.
How about what we think about ourselves or what we wear? Do we think and look like a humble pure innocent saint? Or has vanity/sensuality consumed us? Oh, how many things do we do or think about that a real saint wouldn’t dare do… and yet, we have lived our lives not even concerned. How sad!
“Avoid immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body [and will be punished accordingly], but the immoral person sins against his own body [and will be punished within his own body]” (1 Corinthians 6:18).
From being so deceived, we have made offending God, with so many sins a perfectly acceptable part of our lives, since we:
- Habitually commit sin over and over again without restraint,
- Run to the world’s pleasures (our idols) for happiness,
- Hate our crosses (worry and complain over our suffering, since we want our will and don’t DON’T TRUST IN GOD to take bad and make it into good).
Yet, any ONE of them that we don’t gain a true hatred for… that we aren’t resolved/working hard to amend (leaving what causes us to sin–so we can lose our desire for them is mortal: causing us to choose everlasting punishment because we just won’t repent so to love God.
“When a penitent only hates sin through a weakly although real [but not yet true] contrition, he will resolve to avoid overt acts of sin; but when his contrition is strong and hearty, he will not merely abhor sin, but every affection, every link and tendency to sin.”
–St. Francis de Sales (Introduction to the Devout Life, Ch. 8)
So how much contrition do we have for our sins? What are we doing to leave and avoid them?
Honestly, what sins and idols are we not even striving to leave? What crosses are we rejecting and not even seeking Mercy to carry? Well, now is the time to change… so we can come to see our sins and learn from them and amend our ways. Truly, we must be striving to perfectly obey all of God’s Word, seeking to truly follow Him, not staying blind or ignoring any of Him, if we want to gain a true hatred/true contrition so to Live.
Perhaps we have been committing some of our sins our whole life long, complacently thinking these are just part of who we are. Honestly, we aren’t really striving, with our whole heart, to perfectly obey/love God… to become just like Him. Sadly, we don’t hate sin that much. It is time to seek Mercy to change us.
Yes, It Is Possible to Become Perfect
Oh, how many of us don’t even think it is possible to stop sinning? Sure, we believe God, by His grace, can remove some of our horrible sinful habits.
But the devil has deceived some of us so much, we don’t believe God has the power to remove all of our ability to choose to sin… just some of it. Tragically, we don’t really believe in the almighty power of God? Do we?
“Since that day [when I had made my Act of Oblation on June 9, 1895], love has surrounded me and penetrated me through and through. Moment by moment, the Merciful Love of God renews and cleanses me and leaves my heart without a trace of sin.”
–St. Thérèse of Lisieux (Story of a Soul, Ch. 8)
Yes, some saints have received so much grace from God they have become perfect (unable to choose sin) and have lived their lives in love of the cross. Believe!
With God’s grace, we can too. But we must work hard and seek Him and seek Him and seek Him to obtain it. “Perfection cannot be attained without the greatest toil” (St. Philip Neri, Maxims).
“My soul has known trials of many kinds. I have suffered much on this earth. In my childhood I suffered with sadness, but now [from God’s grace] I find sweetness in all things… “You have given me, O Lord, delight in all you do.” (cf. Psalms 92:4). For what joy can be greater than to suffer for Thy Love?”
–St. Thérèse of Lisieux (Story of a Soul, Ch. 9)
But, if we don’t believe God’s grace can give us a love of the cross and can prevent us from sinning, then how can we strive to perfectly love God/to stop all of our sins and become like Him, if we don’t even believe perfect obedience is possible? We can’t.
“You have regarded perfection as something impossible, even though Jesus Christ tells you to be perfect as your Heavenly Father is perfect. Therefore instead of achieving perfection, you have drunk down iniquity like water. Oh, what grumbling! What lying!”
–St. Anthony Mary Claret, (The Golden Key to Heaven, Med. 1, first point)
Sure the perfection/purity we obtain after we die as we are transformed for our entrance into Heaven, if we die saved, is greater than anything we can achieve on earth (as explained later), but if we want to become saved–obtain true sorrow for our sins–we must strive to not offend God again… to become PERFECT. Frankly, deciding we are going to become a perfect saint (just like Christ), from having a fear of sinning against God, is the FIRST step, one needs to make towards obtaining a saving faith.
“[The proof of] he who [has] little desires to advance in divine love, instead of becoming more ardent in the way of perfection, ever becomes more and more lukewarm… And, on the other hand, whoever [truly] aspires with fervent desire after perfection, and strengthens himself daily [seeks Mercy/grace] to advance in its path, little by little, with time will attain it.”
–St. Alphonsus, Doctor of the Church (Pious Reflection, Part 2, Ch. 5)
Sure, some people will say, “God doesn’t want you perfect.” But don’t believe them. That is a lie from the deceiver to keep us lukewarm. God most certainly doesn’t want us to offend Him again. He wants us to LOVE HIM.
Of course, our lack of talents/abilities are not sinful and part of God’s wonderful plan for our lives. He doesn’t make mistakes with any qualities or lack of qualities we have. They should lead us to a wonderful life IF we can trust in Him and allow Him to do great things through us… short comings and all. And our imperfections and mistakes are fine too (as long as they aren’t from our neglect), but even with them, we should seek to learn and grow so to not fail with them; but our sins must end. God wants us to “stop sinning” (1 Corinthians 15:34).
Now, we don’t have to stop sinning to be saved, but we must come to truly HATE SIN–gain a TRUE desire to never want to offend God again, which gives us true contrition for our sins.… not repeatedly, without restraint, commit any of our sins over and over again. That isn’t how we love God.
Yet, we continue in so many sins, craving the world’s pleasures (our idols), and complaining about our crosses (not trusting in God, not looking to learn and change through them), not even seeking Mercy to amend these sins, thinking this is normal behavior. Well, this is only normal behavior for those living outside of God’s grace, for it clearly proves we are very much not truly sorry for our offences against God. Then upon our death, we wind up rejecting the very Savior we think is saving us. Oh, it is tragic!
“He who really loves God, and is anxious to save his soul, will employ every possible precaution to avoid the occasions of sin [everything that causes him to sin]. He will not only avoid the grievous faults, but he will also be very careful to avoid the very least of them. He considers everything that can displease God as a great evil.”
–St. John Vianney (Sermons for Sundays and Feast Days, How you can determine if you belong to the lukewarm.)
Honestly, do we really consider all sin to be a great evil that we are doing all we can to avoid every one of them so to love God? “Whoever wishes to ascend to God must FIRST avoid sin.” (St. Bonaventure, The Soul’s Journey into God, Ch. 1). If not, then we still desire sin over loving Our Lord. And we are damning our souls. Now is the time to change.
Without having a great zeal for following Christ towards the way of perfection, by the cross, we haven’t even begun to take the first step towards obtaining Eternal Life. Our real Christian life hasn’t even begun. And sadly, for many of us to even obtain a true desire to want to suffer and sacrifice and leave the world and its pleasures so to love God, takes much effort. But if we want to Live, we must work to obtain it.
“There is a moment, and a very noticeable moment… when a person begins to live in a Christian way… The testimony of this life that is visible or can be felt within us is the ardor of active zeal to please God… with total self-sacrifice and hatred of everything which is opposed to this. And so, when this ardor of zeal begins, [true] Christian life has its beginning. The person in whom this ardor is constantly active is one who is living in a Christian way… This is like fire because… once it is received, embraces and fills the whole being of a man.”
–St. Theophan the Recluse (The Path to Salvation, Ch. 1)
But most tragically, most simply don’t have a burning passion to run from everything that is opposed to pleasing/loving God and we are dying. We still want many of our sins and the world’s pleasures for happiness instead of finding our happiness in loving God. We are lukewarm.
“Lord, save us, we are perishing.” (Matthew 8:25). Truly, we can’t live a lukewarm life–just becoming a “good person” lacking true faith in Christ… not truly following Him towards perfection, or we will lose it all.
“[Please] escape from that lukewarmness which provokes God to reject you.”
–St. Bernard of Clairvaux, Doctor of the Church (Letter #96, to Abbot of Fountains)
Please know, once we stop working for the goal–to “sin no more” (John 8:10)... to “follow me [Christ]” (Luke 9:23)–and think we are good enough by our prayers and works, we are lukewarm and dead… it doesn’t matter how far we have advanced in our faith we think we are; we are dead and don’t understand our need for mercy nor the consequence of just one sin.
“Whoever claims to abide in him ought to live [just] as he lived” (1 John 2:6).
When our hearts are truly contrite or when we are even growing towards becoming truly contrite, we will abandon all that is causing us to sin (occasions of sin) and make and keep resolutions to amend our ways. But on top of that, we will also desire to live a life of great penance— in “sackcloth and ashes” (Luke 10:13) in sorrow for our sins, wanting to make right our wrongs (as best we can) to God and neighbor.
“Go to confession, do penance, and cry over your sins as much as you want to, [however] God will never forgive you if you do not make restitution when you can. All your confessions and communions will be sacrileges which you heap one upon another. Return what does not belong to you or you must make up your mind to burn in hell.”
–St. Augustine, Doctor of the Church (St. John Vianney, Sermons for all the Sundays and Feasts of the Year)
What have we taken from another? Besides their money and material possessions… have we taken their peace (by putting them down or treating them poorly), their reputation (by spreading negativity or lies about them), their faith (being a horrible example to them)… Hum… What have we done? We have a lot of penances to perform. We need to correct the damage we have done… the slander and destructive words we have spoken.
Making a sacrifice and saying a prayer for someone we have hurt is good, but truly humbling ourselves and apologizing and correcting what we can is what the truly sorrowful do. We must not be self-absorbed and too proud to admit our errors, but focus on letting go of it all and doing good for the ones we have injured.
Those of us with true contrition, or with some even amount of real contrition (some hatred for not loving God) will feel so badly for our offences against Our Perfect Lord and neighbor, we won’t want to seek out what we like in life, but what we don’t like as a punishment for ourselves. We will know we don’t deserve what is good. Just like the Ninevites, who sought a penance for their sins to punish themselves… since by nature of true sorrow, we will want to punish ourselves for our trespasses committed against God, seek His forgiveness for our sins and work hard to stop our offences.
“When the people of Nineveh believed God [understood their sins were so great they were going to be destroyed]; they proclaimed a fast and all of them, great and small, put on sackcloth [as a penance for their sinfulness]” (Jonah 3:5).
Therefore, when we sincerely hate our sins, we will want to suffer and sacrifice, not only because we fear Hell (attrition) but we will want the cross because we want to love God (contrition) and send grace for the salvation of His children.
We will live the cross to become like Christ and to help make satisfaction for our sins and even for the sins of the whole world, as we “rejoice in my sufferings for your sake [to send you grace], and in my flesh I am filling up [with grace from my sufferings for the salvation of my soul too]” (Colossians 1:24).
Yet, of course accepting Christ’s perfect atonement is what purifies us for our entrance into Heaven (if we die saved, as explained later). But penance is most necessary for us to enter into Heaven, since Jesus’ atonement only atoned for our sins committed before our baptism. All of our sins committed after our baptism we must atone for, if we wish to accept His perfect atonement again, for our entrance into Heaven.
“Absolution takes away sin [if the sinner is truly contrite], but it does not remedy all the disorders sin has caused. Raised up from sin, the sinner MUST still recover his full spiritual health by doing something more to make amends for the sin: he must “make satisfaction for” or “expiate” his sins. This satisfaction is also called “penance.” (CCC # 1459)
Yes, when we hate our sins or even want to hate our sins, we will LOVE OUR CROSSES (all of our pains and challenges in life) knowing when we embrace them, we accept much help/grace from God, who desires to bless us and others by the carrying of our crosses. Then we will be truly working for the salvation of souls: helping others to obtain grace to move them towards true contrition/true love of God, following the TRUE example of Christ and the saints before us.
“The life of a Christian should be a continual exercise of penance… nothing is more necessary in order to establish in your soul the empire of grace and destroy that of nature [of wanting to sin (your self-love), so you can sincerely want to love God, for the salvation of your soul].”
–St. Francis de Sales, (The Secrets of Sanctity, Rule of Life VII)
But penance and atonement are completely lost in the world today too. Please know, true penance, is so much more than just saying a couple of prayers, which is addressed later.
“You could punish yourself [perform a penance (choose the cross) to deter yourselves and/or obtain grace] and flee from the illicit lusts you delight in, and so honor My martyrdom by fighting against your burning desires [for sin and the world] and bear My cross in your body… but you despise good and do evil… you choose not to restrain yourself, but to sin freely.”
–Jesus to St. Hildegard of Bingen (Vision 10, #2)
Oh, the devil has destroyed the true, saving faith. But now it is time to restore it. Despite our life of sin, God’s love for us still hasn’t subsided, and He wants to restore us and the faith to Life. “[Come Lord Jesus] the Restorer of ruined dwellings” (Isaiah 58:12).
Contrition That Saves
This saving faith, this contrition that saves, is quite dynamic. To obtain it, God’s grace needs to give us a faith that has the following qualities.
The qualities of a saving contrition produce a hatred for sin that moves the soul to:
- Want to become a perfect self-sacrificing saint (want to stop offending God with ALL of our sins because we fear to offend God, whom we desire to love with all of our hearts),
- Look for our sins–stop refusing to see our sins (honestly examine our conscience),
- Confess our sins,
- Repent of the sins (state true sorrow),
- Make resolutions to leave the sins,
- Choose and/or accept and perform penances for the sins,
- Seek Mercy for help to stop sinning,
- Be resolved/working hard to leave and never commit sin (truly seek God’s will),
- Produce results of faith/contrition and are reducing and leaving the sins,
- Desire to suffer anything, ever death, rather than offend God again.
Yes, we have true hatred for a sin when we are willing us admit/confess the sin and from understanding the gravity just one sin has against Perfect Goodness it causes us to sincerely never want to commit it again (have no will/desire for the sin), which produces a detest for the sin causing us to be willing to suffer rather than commit the sin again.
Those are the qualities of a saving/true contrition. But we can’t have it for just one sin, but all of them.
But I do want to make it clear that most people begin to change their ways and will do all of those things to the best of their ability from having a fear of perishing into Hell (servile fear) and that isn’t a saving contrition. But it is a good start.
“They have arisen with servile fear [fear of suffering]… the soul, having seen the punishment which follows her sin, climbs; and gathers together her memory to recollect her vice [learn her sins], her intellect to see the punishment which she expects to receive for her fault, and her will to move her to hate that fault. And let us consider this to be the FIRST STEP [towards a saving faith].”
–God the Father to St. Catherine of Sienna (A Treatise of Discretion)
Yes, after we recognize our need for Mercy–come to see our sinfulness, punishment we deserve and need for help and forgiveness–gain servile fear of the Lord, that is when most people begin to move towards amendment.
Therefore, hidden in the first quality of a saving contrition is a quality that hasn’t been addressed clearly in which we need to be saved. You see, we need to do all of those things because we can’t bear to offend God, whom we should be loving (filial fear)… not mostly because we fear rejecting God and perishing into Hell for eternity, but from love for God.
For a confession to be even considered valid, we must confess with some amount of hatred for sin from a fear of sinning against God (moved by faith) known as “godly grief.” For a confession to a priest to be valid, this fear can be because we fear punishment/Hell but for it to arise to true contrition (a saving faith), we must desire to suffer anything rather then offend God because we can’t bear to offend God, whom we seek to perfectly love. And to obtain this kind of love for God takes much grace.
“For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation [causes us to leave the sins we love and embrace Mercy] and brings no regret [brings us to a saving faith], but worldly grief [sorrow derived from self-pity/pride] produces death.
For see what earnestness this godly grief has produced in you, what eagerness to clear yourselves [to stop the sins–truly repent]” (2 Corinthians 7:10-11).
Prior to having a hatred for sin driven from fear of the Lord–having a fear of sinning against God because we have become aware of its consequences against God and ourselves (some amount of servile or filial fear), believe it or not, we have only made false confessions.
Sadly, from the devil deceiving us, this is true. Most have only sought God for forgiveness because we possessed worldly grief, not godly grief. Sadly, we attend confession for reasons like wanting self-improvement or duty, thinking going to confession is what good Catholics do to be saved (but with no actual hatred for our sins), or to remove our feeling of guilt, etc..
But, if we want to receive any grace from confession, we must have some amount of fear of the Lord, to accept mercy–either helping mercy or forgiving mercy–through the blessed confession to a priest:
- Fear of suffering (servile fear/imperfect contrition/attrition),
- Fear of not loving God (filial fear/perfect contrition).
Sadly, most have never had either of those fears, since we live in a world that tries so hard to strip us of all fear of sinning against God. And if we do obtain grace and obtain them for a moment, there will be some poor deceived soul, through misguided love, to strip us of them as they perhaps say, “Don’t worry about your sins… trust in God’s mercy.” Tragic! As if we can accept God’s mercy, without having fear of the Lord.
Sure there is no sin, Mercy doesn’t greatly desire to forgive. He wants us in Heaven; it doesn’t matter what horrendous sins we have committed, but if we can’t obtain actual sorrow for them, we will reject Mercy for sin.
But if we live deceived, we approach and leave God after confession, thinking Mercy will forgive us, when we are rejecting Mercy since we are without even caring that we have offended Him… have no hatred for our sins. We think if we just confess with our mouth, we are forgiven, but that is a lie.
“[For only] if we confess our sins [with true sorrow], he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins” (1 John 1:9).
Please know, to accept actual (helping) grace from God through confession, to move us towards true contrition, all we need some amount of either of these fears, which hopefully from God’s grace after reading this, we now have, which gives us some amount of hatred/fear for our sins. Then the sacrament of reconciliation can really begin to help us.
But to accept forgiveness of a single sin, we must hate that sin enough to be willing to die rather than commit the sin again because of fear of the Lord–because we fear to not love God.
Sorrow for Offending Everyone — but God
Tragically, reality is, most of us attend confession seeking forgiveness from God without even considering that our sins are horribly offending God... not loving Him.
We are concerned about ourselves… perhaps we are wanting to avoid Hell, but we are not concerned with the fact that we are grieving God with every one of our sins.
“Do not grieve the holy Spirit of God” (Ephesians 4:30).
If we do happen to feel sorry for a sin and even work hard to leave it, it isn’t so we can stop offending God–to love Him. That is not the motive that drives our actions. It is so we can improve our or another’s lives. We care little if at all about God.
Perhaps we confess our sins, but it isn’t to apologize to God for doing wrong against Him or so we can receive His grace to help us to not offend Him again. No. It is because we feel obligated to do so in order to be a “good” Catholic or we do it since we are embarrassed for doing wrong and want to be “good” (from our pride) and know we will feel better if we think God has forgiven us.
Sadly, for most of us, as was said before, we never actually think that we are offending God–not loving Him–that He is the one we are mostly hurting with our sins. Tragic!
Truly, God isn’t some heartless deity who cares nothing about us and what we do…. He is offend beyond our comprehension by just ONE sin. We should be greatly sorry for offending God. But since the devil has stolen our grace, we aren’t. From living so deceived, we simply aren’t horrified and grief stricken that we have offend Our Most Beloved Lord. We don’t grieve over our sins.
Sure, we might cry over our sins, but for most it is driven from self-pity, perhaps because we messed up so badly and feel so guilty, but not because we are grief-stricken from offending Our Lord, whom we want to love perfectly (filial fear). But from our pride being injured.
“They grieve over everything but [offending/losing] me. They grieve for their own and their friends’ losses…They grieve over offending or hurting people more… but they do not grieve about offending or hurting me, who am the Creator of all things… I am utterly vile and despicable in their eyes [but they think they love me,]… [yet] they do not consider me worthy of any good [to stop offending Me… to humble themselves], even though I have given them all good things.”
–Jesus to St. Bridget of Sweden, (Revelations, Ch. 46)
Yes, we are so far from loving God. Do we hear the cry of Our Lord? We must change! Our selfishness must end. We must come to hate our sins and grieve over offending GOD (not loving Him), whom we should be perfectly loving. We must learn how to fear sin.
For example: Let’s say, we committed an abortion and then we felt really badly for taking the life of our child. We want to be forgiven of our sin to find peace for ourselves. Then we go to confession seeking God’s forgiveness… but if we don’t realize that not only did we end the life of our child, which is of course very wrong, but even more important than that, we greatly OFFENDED GOD… showed much maliace towards God, then from not even caring that we have offended Our Lord, we confessed our sins, but we rejected God’s forgiveness, since we lacked sorrow for offending Him. This is true.
We can be sorry and should be sorry for any wrong we do, but even athiets are sorry for their wrongs. They just aren’t sorry for offending God (not loving Him). Our intentions for our sorrow must be greater than that of an athiest. We must be mostly sorry for OFFENDING PERFECT GOODNESS with any sin if we wish to be forgiven.
Please know, the act of confessing our sins, by nature, does help us find peace even if we haven’t been forgiven by God… and especially if we can, humble ourselves and forgive ourselves for our sins. But even athiests can find this release of anexity/peace from confessing his sins to someone… that isn’t proof of God’s forgiveness.
Yes sadly, even though God’s unfathomable mercy wants to forgive us of any and all of our sins, since He loves us regardless of our injuries to Him, but since we aren’t sorry for offending Him, we are rejecting His forgiveness He wishes to give us.
If we aren’t at least mostly sorry for not loving Our Lord (above being sorry for offending others), either because we fear His just punishments (servile fear/imperfect contrition/attrition) or because we can’t bear to offend Our God, who is all good and deserving of all of our love (finial fear/perfect/true contrition), of course being resolved to suffer death rather than commit that sin again, WE REJECT HIS FORGIVENESS in the sacrament of reconciliation.
But remember to be saved, when we aren’t confessing before a priest, like at the moment of our death (when no priest is around), our hearts must be raised from servile fear into filial fear of the Lord: perfect/true contrition for our sins or all is lost.
This is why the saints are trying to warn us that so few are being saved. We are not sorry for offending God. Few have grown from having just some “worldly grief”: sorry for offending others, sorry for being less than who what we want to be, sorry for getting caught, sorry for feeling guilty, etc., into “godly grief”: sorry for offending God (not loving God) based on some amount of fear of sinning which leads to change, so we can grow into having true sorrow: sorry to the point of wanting to suffer so to not offend God, whom we seek to perfectly love (all self-love is gone).
“Oh, how many live blind lives [not knowing the faith or themselves]… from day to day, from year to year, until we approach death, when we expect to find that we have done something to our credit, only to discover nothing but sacrileges [was truly done], which we have committed by our confessions and communions.”
–St. John Vianney, (Sermons of the Cure d’ Ars, Passion Sunday-“Repentance”)
Please know, we might have felt God’s grace in the sacrament of confession, but without at least having some amount of “fear of the Lord”, we couldn’t embrace the grace. Tragically, Our Lord’s transforming and/or forgiving grace hit the surface of our souls, never remained and just fell to the floor. To learn more please read, “How Bad Confession Damn Us?”
Please know, from God’s unfathomable mercy, there are many ways God has provided to help us grow into a truly contrite heart (as listed further in this article). We need to partake in them. He wants us in Heaven.
“Oh, if sinners knew My mercy [that wants to help them], they would not perish in such great numbers.”
–Jesus to St. Faustina, (Diary #1196)
We Are Not Born With a Saving Faith
I tell you, we aren’t born with this kind of faith… this great hatred for sin… this great love for God.
From the consequences of Adam and Eve’s first sin, our nature is now greatly inclined towards evil. We are born with a great will for sin. “The flesh is hostility toward God [it desires sin]” (Romans 8:7). Our flesh by nature wants to love itself and not God. Even when we do good for others, without God’s grace moving us, we are actually do acts of charity for self love. Yes, without grace moving us, everything is for self love, but we just can’t see it.
This is why we are so blind, we follow the desires of our hearts, doing what we “think” is good, but MOST of the time, our desires are driven by sin… not grace. Discerning the spirits is quite challenging but prayerfully discerning what God will is for us at all moments is the only way to live a life without following our sinful inclinations.
This is why God tells us NOT TO FOLLOW OUR WILL, since from the fall of Adam and Eve, our will is that of sin.
“Live for the rest of your earthly life no longer by human desires [which is that of sin] but by the will of God” (1 Peter 4:2).
Only He knows what is truly good. Sure, we might have God’s grace moving part of our choices but we don’t only want part of what we do being “good” (driven by God) and the rest being that of sin (driven by our own will). No; if we want Eternal Life we need God to guide us all they way to a saving faith, which is only don’t by following His will.
We want our will to become one with God’s. To do that we need to seek Jesus, OUR SAVIOR, so He can change our nature (our hearts) and give us a “new heart” (Ezekiel 36:26), which hates our will (has a great hatred for our desire for sin/self-love)–so we can have a great desire to love Him (live for His will).
“A new heart I will give you, and a new spirit I will put within you; and I will remove from your body the heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. I will put my spirit within you, and make you follow my statutes and be careful to observe my ordinances”(Ezekiel 36:26-27).
St. John Henry Newman teaches a congregation how to obtain this kind of heart. He says, “Grace overcomes nature, and grace only overcomes it.” So, as was said before, GRACE–God’s transforming grace–we must seek and a lot of it, since our condition (our want for sin) is very great.
“You were dead through the trespasses and sins in which you once lived, following the course of this world [loving sin over God]… at work among those who are disobedient. All of us once lived among them in the passions of our flesh [before God’s transforming grace changed our hearts], following the desires of flesh and senses, and we were by nature children of wrath [who willed to sin], like everyone else.
But God, who is rich in mercy, out of the great love with which he loved us even when we were dead through our trespasses, made us [who seek Him to change our hearts] alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved” (Ephesians 2:1-7).
Please know, this grace that saves us and makes us into saints is a two part gift from God:
- “solid food” for the mature– those with a saving faith (1 Corinthians 3:2)
- “pure spiritual milk” for those growing towards maturity (1 Peter 2:2)
“[Those wanting to grow towards maturity] long for pure spiritual milk so that through it you may grow into salvation [grow into a saving faith]” (1 Peter 2:2).
This salvation we seek–sanctifying grace/perfect forgiveness–came from God’s suffering and death, in which we received at our baptisms. But when we became of the age to sin (had full knowledge of what we were doing) and our nature, which is hostile towards God, desired sin (lacked contrition for our first sin), we rejected God’s free gift of eternal life, since not hating to offend God with any sin makes those sins mortal. Now, because of our great desire for sin, we need to follow Christ and seek God’s helping/transforming grace to remove our want for disobedience, so we may obtain a new heart that wants to love God. Then we can comes to truly love God and become alive again with Christ.
Therefore, since “God delivered all to disobedience” and now we all desire to disobey, to grow into a saving faith (maturity in the faith), we must seek Christ for mercy (His transforming grace/pure spiritual milk) “until we all attain to the unity of faith and knowledge of the Son of God, [and grow in] to mature manhood [a saving faith]” (Ephesians 4:13).
If we seek God’s help daily and do so correctly, from His actual/transforming grace, He will teach us and show us how and what we need to change so we can grow and grow in faith. Then we will become a “new creation” (2 Corinthians 5:17), and be saved by the grace of God. Amen!
Therefore, we must seek Our Savior to save us. We must “believe in the victory of grace over sin… [and] not to surrender before any sin,” as Pope St. John Paul II taught us in his spiritual diaries (Sept. 2, 1964).
Please know, if we surrender to any sin and neglect to seek Christ to save us (to remove our desire for it)— just ONE sin, as has been said, which we don’t TRULY repent of (lack true hatred for) rejects God’s forgiving saving mercy for that sin and chooses an eternity of torment. This is the truth. We must repent of ALL of our sins with true sorrow to be saved.
What is more terrifying than this? Shouldn’t we be concerned with our Eternal Life? Shouldn’t we be “work[ing] out your salvation with fear and trembling” (Philippians 2:12).
Oh, how far are we from a saving faith, since we have neglected to seek Christ to help us remove our desire for so many sins our entire lives, and we just repeatedly commit them over and over again… thinking nothing of them. Well, each one is deadly and our hour of judgement is rapidly approaching. Beware! There is no moment to waste! It takes much time, for most, to come to truly hate what we have spent our entire lives loving. Seek Christ to change us today.
Yes, despite our life of rejecting Christ, injuring Him greatly, God still wants to save us. “By the tender compassion of our God” (Luke 1:78) Christ came in the form of His own creation to achieve for us the repentance we couldn’t obtain on our own, in which we received at our baptisms. AND, after our nature rejected His forgiveness–He became an example for us to follow, so from our new birth we can easily see how to become renewed in grace and grow from that new birth to regain and keep God’s saving mercy He died to give us, for the salvation of our souls.
“He saved us through the baptism of new birth AND renewal [renewing grace in us, to destroy our desire for sin] by the Holy Spirit” (Titus 3:5).
I know, perhaps we have sought Jesus to make our lives better on earth, but from being deceived, we have neglected to seek Him to SAVE US. Truly we have neglected to seek Christ to change our hard hearts of self-love and make them into hearts of true love for God. As a result, we grow in faith a little, but tragically, we are still far from a mature/saving faith, and we are rejecting Him at the time of our death for sin. Tragic!
We can’t continue to do this.
Therefore, the reason all of our prayers, Masses and works, etc. don’t move us to sin no more (to perfectly love God) is because we do them with proud hearts of self-righteousness… thinking those acts make us holy. When it is God’s grace, given to the HUMBLE HEART through those acts, that causes us to not want to sin again and love God that does.
“We believe in Him… and are confident that by His grace and guidance we shall prevail against our adversary the devil.”
–St. Jerome, Doctor of the Church (Letter to St. Augustine )
Yes, God’s grace changes our hearts into hearts of true contrition for our sins. But, since “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble” (1 Peter 5:5), because we are so proud (don’t know our real sinfulness and need for mercy/need to change), we have rejected so much of the grace that was sent through those pious acts, which should have helped us to come to truly hate sin and truly LOVE GOD that now we are blind and dead.
Sadly, after all that God has done… all of our years of being a “Christian”, most have rejected all or most of God’s transforming grace, and we are still with such little faith (little love for God). We are still hating our crosses and complaining and impatient when things don’t go our way? We are still lacking so much trust in what God allows that we worry when things don’t go well or according to our will? What kind of faith do we really have? What kinds of sins are we still living in–ignoring? Honestly, are we really leaving our sins and becoming saints so we can LOVE GOD? Truly, lying to ourselves, won’t save our souls.
“What about all the good works we have done, were they all in vain? All those fasts, penances, almsgivings [donating money], the Communions and Confessions, do they not deserve any recompense [grace/payment]? No, Jesus Christ will say to you, your prayers were only idle babblings, your fast hypocrisy, your almsgiving vain… I [Jesus] was never [truly] considered in any of your doings… depart, ye accursed, into eternal fire.”
–St. John Vianney, (Sermons of the Cure of Ars, First Sunday of Advent, The Last Judgement)
The Devil Has Stolen Our Faith
Look at what we have allowed the devil to do! He has stolen our faith and salvation!
We are remaining in our sins, and presuming we are saved because we are “Christians.” Tragic! Oh, from misguided love, we say, “Focus on God’s love”… “Trust in God’s mercy”, thinking we are helping others, but we aren’t helping anyone, since God’s children are REJECTING God’s love and mercy for sin. We are so deceived!
We don’t know how to really help people or save souls. Sadly, “we shall find out at the day of judgment that the greater number of Christians who are lost were damned because they did not know their own religion” as St. John Vianney warns a congregation.
“The huge dragon, the ancient serpent, who is called the Devil and Satan, who deceived the whole world, was thrown down to earth… [the devil] went off to wage war against… those who keep God’s commandments and bear witness to Jesus… Fascinated [by his lies], the WHOLE WORLD followed after the beast [and lost The Way to Heaven]… whoever has ears ought to hear these words.” (Revelations 12: 1-9)
Yes, as prophesied, we–those who “bear witness to Jesus [Christians],” have fallen into “the snare of the devil” (2 Timothy 2:26). We aren’t even concerned with our ETERNAL LIVES, but yet, we are dying.
We want to make others “happy” in their earthly lives, but horribly, we have no care for their eternal happiness. It isn’t even a thought in most of our minds, except perhaps when we are dying. Tragic! Yet, what is more important than this?
And for those of us, who God has enlightened to this atrocity–humanity perishing from our lack of true love for God/lack of true contrition for our sins–from our lack of faith, care, and/or courage (our self-love), we stay mute.
We are apparently okay with doing nothing, letting souls stay ignorant and not warning them of their need to seek Christ to save them, as we watch bounds of souls not sincerely repenting and changing from their life of sin and choosing to be tormented for all time—“[being thrown] into the fiery furnace, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth” (Matthew 13:50)–because nobody has loved God’s children enough to warn and help them grow into a true mature saving faith: a faith of True love for God, which has TRUE contrition/true hatred for every sin we have ever committed.
Oh, how much do we really love and care for God and His children, if we aren’t even willing to carry a cross so to do what is necessary to help save their souls from eternal torment? Woe to the poor souls who commit such crimes. “Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels” (Matthew 25:41) is what awaits. Yes, this is what eternal life will be like for us who refuse to clearly preach THE TRUTH and save God’s children from death. Horrific crimes against humanity have occurred and are occurring. We can’t just do nothing and watch God’s children die. This must end!
Who is Warning Us of Our Impending Doom
Oh, where are the John the Baptists of today… telling us to “repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.” (Matthew 3:2). Yes, repent, for your judgement is coming near. Truly, our judgement is coming. Our eternity is quickly approaching.
At the moment of death, we will all see kingdom of heaven, where God awaits us to judge us. We must become prepared. Our entire life should be to prepare for this moment. When we will stand before Jesus the “just judge” (2 Timothy 4:8), the true state of our hearts will be revealed, whether purified by the cross and forgiven or clinging to the world (sin) and damned. Then our punishment or reward will be given and our eternity will begin.
John the Baptist is warning us of our great need to repent, so we can be clean/purified for judgment with Christ, which will be in the kingdom of Heaven, “See! The judge stands at the gate” (James 5:9), and it is coming very near.
“Jesus [who is in their presence] began to proclaim, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.” (Matthew 4:17).
Jesus proves that John, in that statement, wasn’t speaking about Jesus coming near… but rather about our need to repent, so we can obtain the kingdom of Heaven (salvation). We see both John and Jesus preach repentance as being needed to be ready for judgement, for the salvation of our souls.
But sadly, from our lack of correct living, understanding and preaching, we see a world so greatly deceived, with no concern over their sins or their salvation… living lives greatly opposed to the Law of Love. Many are even looking for ways to be assured of our salvation, despite how we live, so to not “work out your salvation with fear and trembling” (Philippians 2:12).
Tragically, we are wanting salvation without seeking Our Savior to save us… without seeking Jesus to remove our great desire of sin… as we live comfortable with our offences against God, with false smiles on our faces, thinking nothing of our sins and our idols, believing, since God is so merciful He will save us, even though we are rejecting His mercy and far from a saving faith from our great love for sin. It is absolutely tragic!
“Woe to you, [those who have seen Jesus’ love/Christians]… For if the mighty deeds done in your midst had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day [not destroyed and sent to their doom]. But I tell you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom on the day of judgment than for you” (Matthew 11:21:24).
If we want to see the truth–how the world is deceived–we don’t have to look very hard. We see how the world is a mess. “Layman and priest alike… the earth is polluted [with evil] because of its inhabitants, who have transgressed laws, violated statues, broken the ancient covenant [of love]. Therefore a curse devours the earth and its inhabitants pay for their guilt” (Isaiah 24:2-6).
Yes, we are suffering a curse–the consequences of our sins–because of our great defilement of God‘s Law, and now, we can no longer see The Way to Heaven and are living with much confusion. Honestly, we don’t see a world with beautiful saints, who have left their lives of sin, to love God. No; we see a world swarming with evil/sin, who has no desire to amend… suffering and suffering.
Perhaps, we see how we are a mess–with depression, anxieties, worries, impatience, tempers, complaints, negative thoughts about others and many other sins–which are great proof we are doing something very wrong. Not only is the world a mess… as we now know the world is dying. We are not embracing God’s saving forgiving mercy; we are rejecting it, and we are DOING NOTHING ABOUT IT.
“The whole world has thus become corrupt, they [My ministers] being much more guilty than seculars.”
–God the Father to St. Catherine of Sienna (A Treatise of Prayer)
Yes, Christians are dying… religious and non-religious alike. The saints in their vast wisdom are telling us the truth.
This is a tragedy that simply can’t be ignored. We are talking about ETERNITY! We must save our souls. We must “labor for eternal salvation with a continual fear of losing it” as St. Alphonsus teaches, his “Way to Salvation and Perfection” (Ch. 18). What is more important than this? But since we have been so deceived, we don’t know where we are going wrong or perhaps now we do see something, but it is still so very few of our great errors that are damning us. We need help!
But the devil doesn’t want us to acknowledge “how great is the multitude of those who still sleep in the darkness of error” as Pope St. Pius X has warned us, so we won’t with “fear and trembling” seek Our Savior correctly. No, the evil one wants us to live as if everyone goes to Heaven… with no fear of Hell, which has given us no motivation to amend our lives, which has killed God’s children.
But now it is time to gain fear of the Lord (fear of sin and it’s consequences) and seek Mercy to save us. Then we can learn what God’s will and purpose is for our lives, which is great and leads to Life, and not waste our time on fruitless things anymore.
When we hear the aforementioned truths, we can respond in three ways:
- ignore them and think they are speaking about someone else,
- think we are given more wisdom and we know better, or
- try to understand where we are going wrong, so we can change and be with the “few,” since there is much of the faith we have lost correct understanding.
“Lord, will only a few be saved?” He said to them, “Strive to enter through the narrow door; for many, I tell you, will try to enter and will not be able. [They won’t have a saving faith]” (Luke 13:23-24).
Can You Hear?
If you can hear God speaking to you through this article and you now have a fear of gong to Hell, then praise God! You are one of the few, who have ears that can hear and have been given the great blessing of having “fear of the Lord (fear 0f sin).” (Acts 9:31).
“You want to gain this fear of the Lord… [to do so, come to] understand the seriousness of an offense against God and to reflect on this frequently in your thoughts; for it is worth our life [salvation] and much more [yours and others eternal closeness with God] to have this virtue rooted in our souls.”
–St. Teresa of Avila, Doctor of the Church, (The Way of Perfection, Ch. 41.)
Fear of the Lord is a gift from God meant to move/motivate us towards doing what is necessary to obtain Eternal Life. “The fear of the Lord is a fountain of life, so that [from fearing sin and its consequences] one may avoid the snares of death [by seeking Christ to remove our desire to sin that leads to Hell]” (Proverbs 14:27). This is the first stage of wisdom.
“Fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom [knowing our need to seek a saving faith]” (Psalm 111:10).
No, fear of the Lord isn’t having an awe or reverence of God or some other nonsense the devil has deceived us with, so we will stay complacent with our sins and die.
According to the true saints, who know The Way correctly, fear of the Lord is having a fear of sinning, because of its consequences, for we know our sins greatly offend God, whom we should desire to perfectly love (finial fear). And if we don’t gain true hatred/true contrition for them, they will banish us into Hell (servile fear), since we have chosen them over God. Sin should be greatly feared; it can kill us. Eternity is forever!
“The gift of fear of the Lord is definitely the basis [from the Holy Spirit]. It is FEAR OF SIN.”
–Pope St. John Paul II, (Spiritual Diary, Sept. 23)
If you have been blessed with this fear, you are honest with yourself (humble enough to admit your guilt) because you know you are not truly trying to leave all your sins; you know you are complacent with many of your sinful ways, lacking true sorrow for them and need Mercy to help remove your great liking for sin from your heart.
Having this knowledge is great! Like was said, this is the first stage of wisdom–the very first step we need to have in order to move from darkness into Light. Most people don’t have this. To learn more please read, “What is Fear of the Lord?”
“The fear of the Lord is hatred of evil [sin]” (Proverbs 8:13).
Now, you can begin, if you are willing to do what is necessary to change, to learn and grow into a saving faith… so one day you can finally come to truly love God. Then you can embrace His Saving Forgiving Mercy and Live. Therefore, if you believe you aren’t saved, then this web-site is for you, and you can start to allow God to transform your life… Alleluia!
But if you have been reading this article thinking, “surely it is not I who has this lack of faith”, believing you are certainly saved… since you are so holy and working to become a saint, or since you love God so greatly, or maybe because you do so much good and hardly sin, or perhaps thinking you have great knowledge of God, fantastic blessings and gifts and/or already possess true contrition for your offences, then this web site is even more greatly needed for you, since you are suffering from much blinding pride like Peter was (Matthew 26:33) and are confused about many things.
I know this is hard to believe but truly, your pride has you deceived as to who you really are. You are actually lying to yourself, and you can’t see many of the sins you love (the ones you don’t sincerely desire to leave) nor do you correctly understand what true contrition really is… it is HARD to obtain (as explained later). Sadly, your pride has blinded you.
Please don’t live in denial or allow this to anger you and blind you even more, but humbly look for where you might be going wrong (it is possible)… because God wants you in Heaven too.
“For in pride there is ruin and great confusion” (Tobit 4:13)… “When pride comes, then comes disgrace; but wisdom is with the humble” (Proverbs 11:2).
The Humble Know They Need to Be Saved
Once we presume we are saved–presume we are in a state of grace–we know the devil has us, and we are drowning in pride. Tragically, Christians are suffering fantastically from presumption of salvation… I’m not talking about assuming we are saved by our own power. Well, I mean… yes, I do mean that, but to really understand what that means, what I’m really taking about is “presuming we are saved”– declaring that we can read the contrition of our own souls–that we know if our sorrow for our sins is true or not.
How could we ever know that? We can’t read our souls! Once we obtain the age of reason (which isn’t an actual “age” but a state of awareness, which varies from person to person) and begin sinning, we can never presume we are in a state of grace (saved). There can always be a moment when we don’t sincerely hate our sins and aren’t truly resolved/working hard to amend them (lack true contrition), since our sinful flesh (human nature) is inclined to sin–and desires sin greatly, which makes us in great need for Our Savior.
Until we realize we need Our Savior–to help us die to sin–to remove our great desire for sin and replace it with a great desire to love Him, we will remain in mortal sin.
Please know, even the true saints didn’t presume they had such a great faith—that they were saved–despite any relationship they had with God or works they were doing. They were humble.
“O God! my soul was in the state of grace [at my Baptism], it was Thy friend; but by sin it became that slave of the devil, and Thine enemy….O my God! am I in Thy grace or not?
I certainly know that at one time I had lost it [when I desired my first sin and didn’t desire to amend–when I lacked true sorrow for my first crime], and who knows whether I have regained it [if I have gained true sorrow for ALL of my sins so to be in the state of grace again]?
O Lord! I love Thee, and am sorry for having offended Thee; make haste to pardon me…I hope I have arisen from my unhappy condition, but if I have not, hasten, O Jesus! to rescue me from it [give me truly contrite heart so to be in Thy state of grace and united with Thee again].”
–St. Alphonosus, Doctor of the Church, (The Way of Salvation and Perfection, Med. 96)
The saints knew they couldn’t read their souls. That judgement belongs to God alone. “I do not even judge myself [St. Paul said]. I am not aware of anything against myself [any mortal sin still left in me], but I am not thereby acquitted. It is the Lord who judges me” (1 Corinthians 4:4).
Instead of presuming they were saved, the saints HOPED for it, IF they continued to strive with all of their hearts to live The Word until their end.
“Christ died for sinners; we must take heart therefore, and HOPE that Paradise will be ours, provided only we REPENT of our sin, and DO GOOD.”
–St. Philip Neri (If God Be with Us, Maxims)
So, believing in this hope for Eternal Life (for themselves and their neighbor), the saints toiled and toiled daily to more perfectly live for God’s will–to come to understand more and more about their sinfulness… to leave more and more sins and attachments (idols)…. to suffer and sacrifice more and more, so to become perfect saints… knowing it is by living the faith, striving to do it perfectly so to Love God–persisting until the end–that God will remove their great inclination/desire for sin and give them true contrition/true hatred for their life time of offences against Him.
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing [trusting God can save us if we give ourselves to Him/living His Word], so that you may abound in HOPE by the power of the Holy Spirit” (Romans 15:13).
However, if we refuse to obey God then “why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ but not do what I command? (Luke 6:46)… is Our Lord really our God… The One who can save us? Or is it really ourselves, as we do what we want–our will–idolizing ourselves?
Who knows the way to a saving faith? Us or God? What kind of faith do we really have? Now is the time to change! We must live a life of penance/contrition and live the faith–surrender our will for God’s–and persist to the end… to be saved by the faith we believe in: Jesus.
“All who have embarked on [striving to obtain] true contrition and [to live a life of] penance for the sins they have committed, and are firmly resolved not to commit sins again for the future but to persevere constantly in that pursuit of virtues which they have now begun [to grow in], all these become sharers in this holy and eternal sacrifice [for the salvation of souls].”
–St. John Fisher (Commentary on the Psalms)
Again the saints never assumed they were saved, but hoped for it… for God promised it to those who love Him– who sincerely never desire to offend Him again and whole heartedly want to make right their wrongs and continues/endures to the end, since “the one who perseveres to the end will be saved.” (Matthew 24:13).
So with that hope, the saints focused on what they could do to–live the faith–as they begged God over and over again for a greater hatred for sin… a greater desire to leave everything that was keeping them from perfectly loving Him, so they would live for His will and never offend Him again, since they were “unwaveringly to our confession [of faith] that gives us hope, for he who made the promise is trustworthy” (Hebrews 10:23).. We need to do the same.
Now is the time to begin to seek Christ to enlighten us to our sinfulness… so we can change… to give us such a love for Him, that we would rather be tortured than to offend Him. We must never stop seeking Him to give us this kind of heart… it is this kind of heart of love that embraces His saving forgiving mercy so we can Live.
Love to be Nothing
But wanting to see our sins isn’t what we like. We hate to hear anything but complements. “Don’t be negative” we say… “focus on the positive.” As if being honest with ourselves is negative. And sure if are just bashing ourselves looking for self pity, since our pride is a big issue for us (since we can’t stand that we have done wrong), we don’t want to do that; we need to learn how to live for God and not our pride… But the saints focused on their misery… not to the point of despair but they coupled it with focusing on how much they needed their Savior/His mercy… and NEVER how “great” they are. They ran from fruitless complements, because they knew, without God’s grace, they we nothing but sin. They were humble.
However, one of the reasons we go to church is to feel like we are good people, like was discussed earlier… all to cover our sinfulness, since we thrive off our pride: wanting to be good, not accepting who we are, sinners in need of Christ to save us/change us. We want to have a false smile on our faces thinking nothing of our sins.
Yet, “I [Jesus] have come to call… sinners to repentance” (Luke 5:32), not into making Christians cover their sinfulness with their pride.
“In his pride the wicked [deceived] says: “He [God] will not punish”… His path is ever untroubled [he thinks nothing of his sins]; your [God’s] judgement is far from his mind [he thinks he is saved]” (Psalm 10: ).
Tragically, we are quick to point out those we see (or think we see) with greater faults than ourselves and sure some have great faults and maybe even bigger than ours, but this–focusing on others sins–is keep us from seeing our own deadly sins.
One of the greatest problems in the Church is that it is full of proud souls, who think we are so much better than another because we have left some of our sins and now attend Church. We say, “Oh, look at my relative, or my neighbor, or my colleague, or that politician, or that guy over there, etc… they are living in sin, aborting their children, hating others, on drugs, not going to Church, rejecting God’s Word, doing wrong, believing some false religion,” and bounds of other things we declare, thinking we are so much better.
“What is more unjust than to justify yourself in that wherein you condemn another, whilst you yourself are committing worse offences?”
–St. Ambrose (On the Mysteries and On Repentance, Ch. 8)
Well, we aren’t “better.” We are a miserable sinner, lacking grace, just as much in need of a Savior as anyone else. If anything, from all of the grace we have received and have rejected or used poorly, we are worse. The devil has just blinded us through our pride.
“Do nothing from… conceit, but in humility regard others as better than yourselves.” (Philippians 2:3).
Now, from our pride, instead of having pity/mercy on those we see with sin or who offend us, praying greatly for them, knowing we are the same, we don’t forgive them (not truly). We bash them, chastise them and want to prove we are right; we might even try to gang up others to condemn and hate those we see in error. We love slandering others.
We aren’t really seeking to help them, even though we might “think” we are. We just can’t see the ulterior motives of our hearts, since our pride has blinded us to why we really do what we do.
Sadly, we lack tolerance, understanding and love for the sinner or even someone who makes a mistake, since we don’t really see ourselves as the same (just with different mistakes, sins or even the same). We aren’t focused on loving others, trying to save them, like we ourselves desire and need to be saved. Our hearts don’t love like that.
No, from our pride, we think, because we didn’t do what they have done or since we have a calm demeanor and/or good works, we are the sheep on God’s right. When, from not knowing who we are (being blind), we are actually the goats on His left. “He will separate them one from another, as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. He will place the sheep on his right and the goats on his left… And these [on the left] will go off to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life” (Matthew 25:32-33; 46). To learn more please read, “What Makes Someone a Saint.”
Oh, our pride has us boasting how much greater we are… thinking low of others, when we should be focusing on ourselves–thinking low of ourselves–a miserable sinner in need of Mercy to save us, so we can constantly turn our hearts towards God to give us the grace we need to do everything, so our lives won’t be shrouded with sin.
“For who sees anything different in you [aren’t you like everyone else… a sinner]? What have you [that is good] that you did not receive [from God]? If then you received it, why do you boast as if it were not a gift?” (1 Corinthians 4:7).
Truly, if there is anything good in us, it surely isn’t of our own… but yet, we give credit to ourselves, look for complements and attention to boost our pride as we really put down others. “Oh, don’t I look great… sing great… speak great?” “Do you see how smart and successful I am?” “Look at the talents I have.” “I am just so nice.”
Why are we boasting to ourselves or to others? Please ask ourselves, who do we think gave us our looks and talents? Yes, perhaps we worked hard to acquire a skill, but who gave us the ability to learn it… who gave us our life to even be able to do anything at all? God. They are His. We are His.
“God has created you and is your owner, and of all there is in you, so that every affection which is not direct to Him, every word that is not to His praise, every deed that is not done for love of Him, is a theft and an injustice [against God].”
–St. Anthony Mary Claret (The Golden Key to Heaven, Med. 2)
We should never be using His gifts to sin against Him, but using them for His honor and glory… doing His will, not building up our pride. Yet, despite what gifts we have, we are all sinners, just in different ways… all in need of a Savior.
But sadly, many of us still mock and ridicule others, who don’t agree with us, who appear less than us, who we see as a greater sinner than us. Honestly, who do we put down and think poorly of… who do we lack pity for? Truly, we are no better than them.
I know it is hard to see what we do, when we have spent our entire lives not looking. But please, if we want to see, we must look. If we still just don’t see it, then perhaps look at how we respond to politics… don’t we lack mercy, understanding and love for our opponent–neglecting to see that our opponent’s sin (if we can even judge correctly–know right from wrong) is from a great lack of grace and see their need for our help (prayers and sacrifices) so they can change… just like we lack grace, which has caused our sins and need for help. Yet, we pray a billion prayers for the politician we like and none for the one we don’t. What are we doing? We aren’t loving like Christ. To learn more please read, “Right from Wrong– I Don’t Know Any More.”
Tragically, we pride ourselves as being better, but in God’s eyes we proud “faithful” are far worse. It is time to humble ourselves. To learn more please read, “Who Suffers The Most In Hell.”
“He [Christ] also told this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous [thought they could read their own souls and were righteous] and regarded others with contempt [whom seemed more sinful than them].”
“Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee, standing by himself [not looking for his sinfulness], was praying thus, ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people: thieves, rogues, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week; I give a tenth of all my income. [obviously I’m saved/righteous]’
But the tax collector, standing far off, would not even look up to heaven, but was beating his breast and saying, ‘God, be merciful to me, a sinner! [God, help save my soul… strengthen me to leave my sins… I’m a sinner]’. I tell you, this man went down to his home justified [forgiven of his sins, since he had true sorrow for them and knew He needed His Savior’s mercy (help/forgiveness)] rather than the other [who presumed he was saved/righteous… left with nothing/no grace]; for all who exalt themselves will be humbled, but all who humble themselves will be exalted” (Luke 18:9-14).
Truly, we can be considered the most faithful in our Church, who is so nice and generous, with bounds of accomplishments, knowledge, talents, and blessings, which others praise us as “holy” because of them, but they won’t merit us a thing, if our hearts aren’t humble: knowing we are great sinners in need of Our Savior to change us from following our own will (desiring sin), into desiring God to do everything through us… to give us a saving faith and then to move us towards perfection (to perfectly love God). Yes, all of our great works will be in vain if we don’t gain humility.
Sadly, “you justify yourselves in the sight of others [since you view pride as holy], but God knows your hearts; for what is of human esteem [since we are nothing] is an abomination in the sight of God” (Luke 16:15). Yes, we do so much “good” but tragically, from our horrid pride, it is an abomination in the sight of God.
If we do happen to see a failure, instead of allowing it to humble us—to accept our sinfulness/gain self-knowledge, so we can turn to Our Savior to change us with true humility, we live in denial, become angry, wallow in self-pity and/or depression, since we find happiness through our pride (needing to be successful/without fault). To learn more please read, “How to Find True Happiness.”
Then we live unhappy lives looking for someone or something to boost our pride/happiness with a lie… we seek out someone to tell us our sins aren’t so bad… that is just part of life… be kind to yourself… that we aren’t great sinners and are really wonderful people, which is killing us. This is destroying our ability to obtain true humility and blinding us to our doom.
I tell you, we are not wonderful people. Our entire beings–our flesh–is that of desiring sin… remember, “the desire of the flesh is against the Spirit” (Galatians 5:17). But we simply don’t understand. But please know, unless we allow God to move us–our thoughts, words, and actions–all we do is full of sin, even if what we do appears “good”; it isn’t.
“For just as you presented the parts of your body as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness [desiring sin/self-love], resulting in further lawlessness, so now [that you know how to seek God for grace] present your body’s parts as slaves to righteousness [desiring to love God], resulting in sanctification.” (Romans 6:9).
Honestly, we are slaves to impurity and sin… a misery of sin, who can’t do anything truly good, without having God moving our everything. It is GOD, who is good… not us. We must humble ourselves, and learn how to really accept His grace so something truly good can be done through us.
“O good Jesus, thank You for the great grace of making known to me what I am of myself: misery and sin, and nothing more. I can do only one thing of myself, and that is to offend You, O my God, because misery can do no more of itself than offend You, O infinite Goodness!”
–St. Faustina, (Diary #363).
St. Faustina isn’t with low self-esteem bashing herself (since she prides herself on being good). No, she is loving who she is NOTHING, which makes GOD everything. She isn’t trying to be who she isn’t filling her pride with lies to find happiness. No. Her happiness is found in God alone… by seeing His great love for her despite her misery and working hard to LOVE HIM (to surrender Her will for His) so He can do all through her.
We MUST come to accept our great sinfulness too… like the saints… not just saying “we are sinners.” Everyone says that, but we must gain an absolute HORROR for our sins… a horror that drives us to want to see our sins and work hard to leave them.
We need to come to love our nothingness… and stop trying to be who we aren’t and accept who we are. Then we can allow God to make us who He wants us to be.
Oh, we need to seek God to make us truly good. Then He will be wonderful through us, giving all credit to Him, knowing and believing we are truly nothing but sin. When we have this humility, we won’t be crushed into despair when we fail or bad happens nor will we be over joyed (prided/loving our will) when we have success or things go well. We will be content with whatever God wills.
Our joy will be found in God and His will–all He allows: our sins and successes, the bad and the good– knowing God intends to use it all to help us to LOVE HIM more perfectly for the salvation of our and other’s souls.
But sadly, the devil convinces many of us, who are miles away from even understanding The Way from suffering with much blindness to The Truth, that we are working towards sanctity, since we have outward signs of being pious (devoutly religious). When the only thing we are truly working towards is growing in greater blinding pride like the Pharisees and Sadducees, who thought they were “holy” too, by the “good” they were doing. When they were nothing but a misery of blinding pride and didn’t want to see nor leave their sins. This is why they died.
Reject Self-Righteous Praise
When we read God’s Word, pray or do any good work, and we do it from a heart that presumes we are saved–thinks we are in a state of grace since we are so good–our pride is REFUSING HELP from Our Savior (rejecting His transforming grace). We are telling God that we don’t need Him to save us: to send us grace to change our self-loving hearts, so we can amend our ways and gain true contrition for our sins, so we can come to perfectly love Him. We are telling God that we are self-reliant. That we don’t need Him. That we are already saved.
Those prayers are from proud hearts of self-righteousness, like tragically most “faithful” have today. They don’t make us “holy” nor please God, nor do they help us obtain Life. Frankly, proud praise, presuming we are in a state of grace, wounds God’s Heart.
“That [proud] praise wounds My Heart because [real] love has been banished.”
–Jesus to St. Faustina (Diary #1702)
The devil is so cunning He has tricked the whole of humanity into loving themselves and not seeing their sinfulness nor need for Mercy.
When we are suffering from such pride, even if we pray asking God to help us in our works and to make us saints, but we do it presuming we are saved, those prayers are still full of pride. Sure, from our prayers, works and efforts, we can still grow in a life of prayer, gain good habits and do many works, but prideful prayers and works–not knowing our great sinfulness and need for Mercy–are full of self-love, which don’t transform hearts into true contrition and are without real love for Our Lord. They will merit us nothing in the end.
However, God will still tolerate them and continue to bless us (help us) and try to save us with whatever amount of faith we do have, that is, unless our sins turn His face from us. Then we will be left alone. But regardless, until we obtain humility–knowledge of our great sinfulness and gain a sincere desire to leave all of our sins–knowing we are in great need of a Savior–they are all done in vain.
But yet tell me, who in the Church doesn’t think they are already saved or at least saved enough to go to Purgatory? Is there a single soul who isn’t self-righteous and is humble, or is everyone deceived, presuming we are saved, thinking we can read our souls and know the contrition of our hearts?
Is there a single soul who is humble and HOPES for salvation–that “we might become heirs” (Titus 3:7)–by living the faith and doesn’t proudly presume we already have it? Tragic!
“[To be saved] prepare your minds for action; discipline yourselves [to stop sinning/live for God’s will]; set all your hope on the grace that Jesus Christ will bring you [to help you, when you humbly seek Him and strive to live His Word]” (1 Peter 1:13).
The Dead and Dying Robbed of Grace
The last thing we want to do is refuse the help of God at our deaths. We need Christ to save us. But tragically, we see this dreadful presumption of salvation–that rejects God’s help–when we counsel the dying and at endless funerals.
Oh, what is more important for a soul than to learn how to obtain true contrition during the hour of our death? This is the only hour we have left to obtain a saving faith: a faith that sincerely hates all of the sins we have spent our life time loving because they offend God, whom we desire to perfectly love. Eternity is about to begin. But from being so deceived, we counsel souls with lies, right to their eternal doom.
“But you who are a sinner, while you pretend to be just [saved], are fleeing from the remedy of eternal salvation.”
–St. Bonaventure, (Tree of Life #5)
Tragically, there are few souls who are going to confession before their deaths. Yet, confession–if done correctly–is God’s means of moving the sinner to Life. However, even if the dying do feel the need to confess and actually confess their sins, sadly, for most, it is only because they feel they will suffer in Hell for eternity because of their great unrepentant sins, which means they mostly have attrition for their sins. That is, if they actually do feel sorry and fear going to Hell for offending God, which sadly most don’t.
But regardless, even if they do have actual attrition: sorrow for ones sins from fearing to go to Hell for greatly offending God, they don’t have true contrition for their sins: sorrow for ones sins from fearing they have offended God whom they should have been perfectly loving. And true contrition is what saves. The understanding of one’s lack of spending their lives loving God–rejecting God for the idols of the world– simply isn’t comprehended by most penitents.
However, if the dying don’t come to know they need to grow in sorrow from some sorrow, to real attrition, all they way to obtain perfect/true contrition, they will perish. Yes, the dying need a truly contrite heart: a contrition so great that if they had another moment to live they truly would rather suffer any torment rather than offend God again with even the slightest sin–since they want to sin no more/perfectly obey —since they, with all sincerity of heart, ONLY DESIRE TO LOVE GOD.
Sadly, the dying/penitents are mostly concerned about themselves not suffering in Hell (idolize themselves) and are not concerned about God, whom they have most grievously offended (not loved). The dying simply don’t know how to save their souls. They were never taught… so they never seek Mercy to give them a saving faith, making it fantastically hard for them to be saved at their death.
Sure if they have real attrition, they can be forgiven of the sins they have attrition for when confessing to a priest, which is greatly helpful with moving souls towards a saving faith, but at the moment of their death, when no priest is around, if they don’t obtain true contrition for their life time of sins, the sins they weren’t forgiven of… the ones they lacked real attrition for during confession and the new sins they committed since confession won’t be forgiven, and they will still lose everything. We must be forgiven of ALL sins, at the moment of our death, to be saved. Please don’t be deceived.
But for most souls, if they are dying and blessed to obtain a fear of going to Hell, instead of others helping them to go to confession and to educate them to their great need to obtain true contrition for their sins, the anti-Christ, through our misguided love, quickly robs them of that gift (fear of going to Hell) with the presumption of salvation. We tell them to trust in Jesus, trying to convince them they are saved by just believing they are. When they are probably riddled with unrepentant sin and rejecting the very mercy they think is saving them. This is so tragic! To help souls obtain true contrition please read the Lifting Our Values book, “Perfect Contrition.”
For others, who feel they are ready to die, since they presume they are saved–perhaps because: they do so many wonderful good works and pray so many prayers etc., are actually in great darkness, since they are full of pride (thinking they are saved by what they do). If we leave the “blind faithful” in the dark and don’t teach them humility (the truth of their great sinfulness) or how to save their souls… and continue to pretend their souls are well prepared and full of contrition, they will suffer eternal torment too. Oh, what kind of soul will they “appear before the judgment seat of Christ” (2 Corinthians 5:10) with, when they have no humility and are far from a true/saving faith? To learn more please read, “How Can I Save the Souls of Someone Dying”
“For if we believe [with TRUE faith] that Jesus died and rose, so too will God, through Jesus, bring with him those who have fallen asleep” (1 Thessalonians 4:14).
Pretending the dying are saved and have true faith, when they are most likely lost, isn’t helping to save them, but is killing them. Devastating!
Sure, it is very hard to obtain a true saving faith at the moment of our death after a life time of being lost, loving our sins, but it is possible. Yet, we are never even given the chance–never told the truth, so our pride can be crushed–so to seek Mercy to change us and give us a truly humble contrite heart for our life-time of offences against Him (our life-time of not loving God–of not becoming saints). Tragic!
Horribly, we are comforting the dying right to their doom, since we want to avoid conflict (care about ourselves more) and/or only seek their momentary earthly happiness, not their Eternal Life, so we keep them blind. Or we don’t even know how to save souls–how to help someone to grow into true contrition at the moment of their death. Many are deceived into thinking perhaps the sacrament of the anointing is going to do it all, but please don’t be deceived, it won’t. To learn more please read, “Will Anointing of the Sick Forgive Mortal Sin.”
Oh, our neglect to save souls, this horrific problem, is also present with the Catholic funeral too. What is supposed to help save souls is helping to condemn them instead.
Please know, since God isn’t of time and space–He “inhabits eternity” (Isaiah 57:15)–our prayers prayed for the dead can go back in time to help them at the moment of their death. But instead of the blessed funeral Mass motivating us to bring heart felt humble prayers, crying out to Christ to save the dead–to move them into having at least true faith/true contrition (at the moment of their death)–from our Hope in Him, we are proudly presuming the dead are saved and neglect to help them. Yet, we can’t read their souls.
Sadly, from our own lack of humility, we don’t even understand The Word or the prayers of the funeral Mass, and we pray them poorly, if at all, for the dead.
“Those who are led by the Spirit of God [and not by the desires of the flesh] are sons of God. For you did not receive a spirit of slavery [from God] to fall back into fear [from still desiring sin], but you received a spirit of adoption [since you left your nature of sin, for your true desire–God], through which we cry, Abba, “Father!”
The Spirit itself bears witness with our spirit [seeing the truth of our love] that we are children of God [since we have left sin for Christ], and if children, then heirs, heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if only we suffer with him [on earth to purify our souls] so that we may [hope to] also be glorified with him” (Romans 8:14-18).
When our loved one dies, we should be inspired to change our lives and live it in atonement for the sins of the dead (our loved ones), so they can be moved into having at least a saving faith at the hour of their death, for the salvation of their soul. But we aren’t being encouraged to live such an act of charity, since we don’t know how to love (not like the saints and Christ loved us). Sadly, from being deceived, we do nothing to help make atonement for the dead that they might be delivered from their sins.
“Noble Judas exhorted the people to keep themselves free from sin, for they had seen with their own eyes what had happened because of the sin of those who had fallen. He also took up a collection… [as] a sin offering… Therefore he made atonement for the dead, that they might be delivered from their sin” (2 Maccabees 12:42-45).
Oh, what are we doing for the dead? Many don’t even understand the prayers of the Mass are meant to help move the dead into Heaven. If the dying are one of the very few who, at the moment of their death, have enough grace to enter into Purgatory, then our prayers will help them enter Heaven (make them saints). If dying don’t even have enough grace on their own to go to Purgatory (don’t have true sorrow for their sins, like is the case for most souls), then our prayers will help to save them at the moment of their death and allow God to give them a truly humble contrite heart from God’s mercy being sent to them from our prayers at the instant of their death to move them to Life. Yes, since the funeral Mass can be of such awesome value for the dead/dying–it is a horrible shame it is prayed so poorly, if at all. Tragic!
As a result, from our lack of comprehension of The Way, we pray prayers–if we are even doing that–from proud/blind hearts presuming the dead are saved, obtaining for them little, if any grace at all.
Yes, we–from our great sinfulness–have neglected to care for the dead and have made the funeral all about trying to make ourselves, the grieving, feel better. And we do it with a lie… allowing our loved ones to die. Absolutely tragic! To learn more please read, “How Can I Console Someone Grieving.”
Oh, the Church is drowning in pride, which has greatly blinded us to our love of sin and stripped us of correct knowledge of The Way to Heaven and how to love others. No wonder we are in the time of great darkness (as explained later), everyone presumes we are saved. We have no humility!
“Then he [Jesus] began to reproach [correct] the cities [Churches] in which most of his deeds of power had been done, because they did not repent. ‘Woe to you… For if the deeds of power done in you had been done in [the world]… they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes [with penance]. But I tell you, on the day of judgment it will be more tolerable for… [the world] than for you [in the Church]… Will you be exalted to heaven? No, you will be brought down to Hades'”(Matthew 11:20-24).
Yes, Hades… and a horrible place there awaits us, if we don’t change into gaining a saving faith of true contrition for every sin. Sure some of us have changed perhaps once when we first found Christ but now we have gone lukewarm (we are not growing) and lack contrition for many sins, or perhaps we are growing (losing some of the sins we love) but it is so slow, we will never obtain the goal (a saving faith), since we don’t even know we should have such a goal (we have no motivation). We don’t know we are dying and need Our Savior. We have no sincere plea for help.
Yet, it is by humbly persevering in seeking Our Savior for grace, to remove our desire for sins, which transforms and saves, that we can have any real hope for salvation. Yes, “by your perseverance you will secure your lives” (Luke 21:19)… like the saints have done… NOT by proudly declaring we are saved, but by constantly seeking Christ to save us… to make us perfect saints.
“He guides the humble in righteousness [a saving faith], and teaches the humble his way” (Psalm 25:9).
Our Kindness is Killing Others
We want to help others, but we don’t know what we are doing. We are the blind leading the blind. Truly, we can’t lead anyone to a life of peace or eternal Life, if we don’t know it ourselves.
The ONLY reason we live unhappy lives is because we are NOT living the faith correctly. We don’t want the cross. We HATE the cross. We want to be treated with love, kindness, fairness, equality, gentelness… We don’t want to learn how to become like Jesus through the cross. We don’t really want a saving faith. We want our crosses removed.
We don’t want to know or say the truth. We might not think saying the truth–that we are miserable sinners, who are dying and need Mercy to give us a saving faith–so we can learn how to carry our crosses and change isn’t “kind” but it is the truth, which saves. “The truthful witness saves lives, but whoever utters lies is a betrayer” (Proverbs 14:25).
Yes, this truth, if we speak it correctly should be a great cause for concern… actually, it should cause us great fear. If it doesn’t then we are not speaking clearly enough or the ones we are speaking to are dreadfully blind. The Truth, which we must preach, is intended to motivate us to change. If it doesn’t something is wrong.
Today, like was mentioned, God is giving us a very clear truth we can preach, since we are so greatly blind and need such clarity. Unlike the times of old, when a veiled Word was preached, so only the humble can see “even though our gospel is veiled, it is veiled for those who are perishing” (2 Corinthians 4:3)–now from God’s mercy–He is extending comprehension of His Truth to even be understood by the greatly blind (the proud), or really what I should say is that God is using His Word, to humble the proud, so they can have hope to learn The Way. Praise God! But we must preach it and share this book.
Please tell me, is keeping souls blind, complementing them to build up their pride, saying what they want to hear, as we watch them stay in their unrepentant unchanged sins, doing nothing to help move them towards Life, as they walk blindly into an eternity of torment, “kind”? Of course not. What is worse than that?
It is a crime against humanity to not tell God’s children we are dying… to give us no knowledge that we need to seek Our Savior–the Physician–to heal us (to change us–to give us a saving faith) so we don’t perish forever. How can we do that?
“[If] every violation and act of disobedience received a just punishment, how will we escape [Hell] if we neglect [to seek Mercy for help to obtain] so great a salvation.” (Hebrews 2:2-3)
But this is what has happened. We have lost what is most important–seeking salvation–since our pride has deceived us so greatly.
We want friends and success. We want to be the kind, smart or cleaver Christian (preacher, servant)… trying to impress someone… not a Christian concerned with the salvation of souls. Really, “for am I now seeking the favor of people, or of God?” (Galatians 1:10). Honestly, what are we really doing?
Frankly, we have been so vastly deceived as to what is really “kind”, we are unable or afraid to preach the truth that saves… if we even choose to recognize it. We either don’t want others upset with us or we don’t want to see people with guilt, for that makes us feel bad. Then we do and say nothing or we “help” with a lie.
If we see someone feeling badly, from our nature, we want to make them feel better, since that makes us feel good. But again, since we lack so much grace, we seek to make others happy with lies, telling them how great they are… leading them way from understanding that it is their sins which is causing so much pain, instead of leading them to confession and change… to Christ whom can make them really great, which their sins have pushed away.
Of course, I’m not saying we need to go around spending our time criticizing others, even though sometimes God wills that but other times He doesn’t. And of course, I’m not suggesting we complain from any jealousies or weaknesses we might have. That isn’t love. Nor should we speak the truth without gentleness, especially if we are speaking directly with another, unless it proves ineffectual. If that is the case, then we must use stronger words, if it is God’s will, always following the example of Our Lord in The Word, since sometimes, Christ and the apostles knew they needed to “use stronger remedies to effect their cure” as Jesus teaches St. Gertrude the Great (Life and Revelations, Ch. 63).
But, regardless of how we speak, if we do correct someone, it needs to be done from a heart that greatly seeks the salvation of another, not from a proud heart of conceit. But from a heart of true love. Yet, sadly, we aren’t doing this, since our intention are all wrong, and we are really helping to kill souls not to save them.
“Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first [live pure and truly faithful lives]. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand [the light of truth] from its place [in the Church]” (Revelations 2:5).
Sadly our light has been so removed–all seven lampstands (knowledge of The Way) are now gone–and we don’t understand how to obtain Eternal Life anymore. We don’t even want people to think we are great sinners, especially not those in the Church, nor do we want others to be in distress/concerned that their unrepentant/unchanged sins will damn them, especially if we frequent the Mass. We want them to think their prayers and works will save them. The devil wants us blind and happy.
Now, to do that, we have recreated another politically correct version of The Truth, which is a LIE. “For the time will come when people will not tolerate sound doctrine but, following their own desires and insatiable curiosity, will accumulate [false] teachers and will stop listening to the truth and will be diverted to myths” (2 Timothy 4:3-4).
All of which is causing God’s children to live lost and indifferent to those who are perishing. But most are so deceived, we don’t even know we are doing this. Unless you do something about it and preach the truth.
Yes, if you can hear, now is the time to change and follow Christ, not the deceived world which wants to strip us of all concern for our salvation to make us feel “good.” Therefore, let’s preach the truth which SAVES… not with cold hearts, condemning others, but with hearts of true love, which has great concern for the salvation of our neighbors. Eternity is everything! Let’s tell the sheep, “We must seek Christ to change us; we are dying! We need Our Savior to remove our great desire for sin… to save us. We are rejecting Him from our great complacency with offending Him!”
Now, I’m not necessarily suggesting everyone should go out on the street corners telling everyone we are damning ourselves, even though that might be God’s will for some. But, God has a correct way, a unique way for each person and situation in which He wants to use us to help save souls.
To do God’s will, we must seek Mercy for grace to come to know what that is and keep our hearts and minds focused on loving GOD and SAVING SOULS, or we will do things while being self-serving. To learn more please read, “How to Preach the Truth and Save Souls”
“If then my people… humble themselves and pray, and seek my face and turn from their evil ways, I will hear them from heaven and pardon their sins and heal their land” (2 Chronicles 7:14).
Even the Mother of God–Our Lady of Fatima–has begged us to change. “I am the Lady of the Rosary, [the Mother of God exclaims] 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 [with humble hearts for my help].”
Yes, the mother of God tells us why she has come–“I have come to warn the faithful“–but we, faithful, are just too proud. We think she is speaking about someone else. Yet, she has specifically told us she has come for “the faithful.” She is trying to give us Fear of the Lord (fear of sinning), but our pride won’t allow us to hear.
The evil one has even deceived many of us into believing if we have a fear going to Hell, we lack faith in Jesus, since The Word says, “perfect love casts out all fear [of Hell]” (1 John 4:18).
Of course, perfect love casts out all fear of going to Hell, but do we have perfect love of God? Do we no longer sin? Have we received so much of Jesus’ transforming grace that God’s love has removed our ability to offend Him? No. We still sin. Therefore, we don’t perfectly love God, and we very much have something to fear.
As longs as we still sin, “we ought to be fearful of disobeying [sinning] lest any one of you be judge [and found guilty] to have lost his chance of entering [into Heaven]” (Hebrews 4:1).
The fear of sin and its consequences–fear of the Lord–MUST live in us. We can damn ourselves into an eternity of torment from a single unrepentant trespass. Yes, we should fear damnation and take caution to avoid sin and repent of them all. His mercy can’t save us if WE REJECT HIM for sin.
Having a fear of going to Hell isn’t having a lack of faith, it is having WISDOM… what the devil doesn’t want us to have and has stolen from our lives. Oh, how many of the “faithful” have no fear of going to Hell? When “we lose the faith… we do not fear Hell” (St. John Vianey, The Little Catechism, On Lust, Chpt. 8). Just horrible!
“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom…The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge [of how to obtain salvation]; fools despise wisdom and instruction” (Proverbs 9:10; 1:7).
Oh, we are fools. No wonder hardly anyone goes to church. We don’t think it is necessary.
“Work out your salvation with fear and trembling” (Philippians 2:12)… oh, we don’t really understand what that means. We have no wisdom.
If we do go to church… that is good, but tragically, we still go and seek Mercy for the wrong reasons. Sadly, we go to get God’s help for us in this life, or out of obligation, or to become holy (for self-benefit, to feel God’s love/mercenary love… not to truly love God/not to stop offending Him/filial love… not to help us really save souls). Or, perhaps we go to have friends or to do “good” because we like being “good”, making a difference or feeling like we are doing God’s will. I mean none of those reasons are “bad” but if we don’t change, those reasons won’t bring us to Eternal Life.
“Tell me, for what kind of mercy do you pray for…” He answered: “I pray for the mercy of her soul and body, so that she may amend for all her sins in this world and so that none of her sins may come before your judgment.”’
–An angel’s response to Jesus in the Revelations of St. Bridget of Sweden (Ch. 36)
And if we already consider our lives as good enough (don’t see our need for God), why would we even bother spending our time going to church… If we don’t realize we need God to SAVE US… to change our hearts and give us a true hatred for sin/a saving faith or we will choose to be cast into the “place of torment” (Luke 16:28) for eternity, why would we make such an effort to change.
Truly, if we want people to go to church (for the right reason–to love God) and do what is necessary to amend our lives so to obtain a saving faith, we need to PREACH THE TRUTH. We need to know we need to be saved. We need to know we need God to remove our great liking for sin or we will be damned forever.
Oh, what has the devil done? He has stolen our faith, removed our hatred of sin, killed our love of God, destroyed our comprehension of sin and our sinfulness, blinded us to The Way, and tainted our understanding of our need for mercy (help and forgiveness). He has greatly confused us.
If the whole world knew how guilty we are of sin and how much we need Jesus to save us--to remove our desire for sin... so we can desire God alone and be saved--we wouldn't be living the lives we live. Praise God for any guilt and fear of sin we have. It is a good thing. We have offended God, and we need His mercy (help to change). And if we run to Him, no matter how sinful we are, He will save us, if we allow Him.
But tragically, as St. Aquinas, Doctor of the Church, in his Summa Theologica I (q.23, art.7), teaches us “those who are saved are in the minority… very many in accordance with the common course [of life] and tendency of nature [follow our desire for sin and] fall short [of salvation]”…even though God sends us so much mercy to help us and wants us all in Heaven.
We simply refuse His help, mostly from not understanding our sinfulness, the seriousness of sin and from our lack of fear of God; we just don’t seek Him correctly (humbly). We don’t know of our NEED to be saved. We pridefully assume we are. Then we choose our sins instead of Him and die.
“They will not amend their ways. They have no fear of God [fear of sinning against Him]” (Psalm 55:20).
Please don’t ignore God’s servants. As Pope St. John Paul II taught us, “become a saint and do so quickly [you don’t know when your hour will come].” We must teach people fear of the Lord and our need for Mercy–our need to be saved–or we will all be lost forever!
“They [the lost] dishonor Him [Jesus] when He warns them through His servants, [by] ignoring the warnings and doing what they want.
–The Queen of Heaven to St. Bridget of Sweden, (Revelations, Ch. 37)
Please don’t be deceived. The Mother of God is speaking to YOU. You must repent and change. Yes, even if you are one of God’s beloved most blessed shepherds, with fantastic talents, blessings and power. You too have fallen for the devil’s traps and must amend your life. Yes, this is true!
Please listen to Our Lady of La Salette, “[Now,] there are no more generous souls, there is no one [priest] left worthy of offering a spotless sacrifice to the Eternal for the sake of the world….[This is true,] Lucifer, together with a large number of demons, will be unloosed from hell [which has occurred]; they will put an end to [the true] faith little by little, even in those dedicated to God [won’t know The Way]. They will blind them…” Wow! Yes, this has really happened. Everyone is proud and blind. This is why we don’t know The Way to Heaven.
Tragically, the shepherds want to unite the faith and bring us to Life, but they are so deceived, they think they are doing good, but in fact the anti-christ is using them for the distruction of the true faith and the damnation of souls. Just tragic. Now, from having a lack of true shepherds to guide us, we ALL live in the time of great darkness.
“After this first shepherd, that is, after these friends of mine, who used to be in my Church in days of old, other unrighteous shepherds came [the one’s who fell into the trap of the evil one]”… my Spirit is absent from them, since they do not care about the perdition of the sheep…[But you, who have ears that can hear] run with me to the sheep that still have a breath of life and let us lift them up and refresh them! [Teach them The True Way].
Have compassion on me, for I bought them at a very high price!… O my friends [who can hear], I love these sheep so dearly [I can’t bear for them to die]… That is why I cry out to my friends with all my heart… do not spare yourself in working for me since I endured such things out of love for you. Work manfully and bring help to all my sheep in distress [and bring them to Life].”
–Jesus to St. Bridget of Sweden, (Revelations Ch. 59)
Oh, God wants us saved, but we need more warnings. We aren’t hearing. We are all dying. Oh, if you can hear, now is the time for you to convert so God can use you for the salvation of souls.
Please know, Our Lord is in a perpetual sadness over the loss of His beloved children, crying out to us, who can hear to help save them. Who could laugh and be happy, when your very children, that you died for, that you love so tenderly are rejecting you and rushing to their eternal doom?
If you want to bring some joy to God’s crushed heart, then see what you have done wrong and repent… decide you never want to offend Him again and do all you can to truly change. If you can see how you have been mislead, then please know you are still suffering with much blindness. This is only the most very beginning of ones darkness they suffer from. For the man who now knows he has been greatly deceived, but still thinks he has wisdom is a fool and no wisdom is within him.
Oh, but those who can see and are humble, there is a long road ahead of you, since there is just so much you have been darkened to but can’t see, but there is hope. But please know, it will take a while to uncover all of the lies and learn the truth, so we can see the sins we love, come to knowledge of the truth and grow to true repentance.
But after you learn The Way correctly and are living it–have removed many of your planks from your eyes and are now becoming a saint… have proof you understand it, so to not lead another astray–work hard to teach others how to save their and others souls. God wants us all in Heaven.
“For the love of God is this, that we keep his commandments [the entire Word]. And his commandments are not burdensome [if we hate sin and love God]” (1 John 5:3).
Nothing is More Tragic
Tell me, what is more tragic than a person, who thought they gave their life to God, who thought they had a great relationship with Our Lord, who believed they were living the faith correctly, helping others and were ready to die and go to Jesus, to only come to find out, upon judgement, that their faith they thought was great, was only a lie?
Oh, the eternity they thought they had, IS LOST all because they were deceived into believing bounds of lies (many more of which we still need to learn) that have lead them and others to their eternal doom. Horribly, after their life of presuming they were saved, they aren’t with Our Lord; they have rejected Him forever. Utterly devastating!
When we go before God the Almighty at judgement, we won’t be able to lie to ourselves any more. We will stand there with the naked truth of our great rejection of God (our guilt). “Lo, I am coming like a thief! Blessed is he who is awake, keeping his garments [clean/without unrepentant sin] that he may not go naked and be seen exposed [with vast sin at judgement]!” (Revelation 16:15).
Yes, at judgement, our great love of ourselves, love of sin and love of the world (hatred for God) will be blaringly present. What we refused to see before, will now never leave us. “For there is nothing hidden, except to be disclosed [made known]; nor is anything secret, except to come to light [for all to see]” (Mark 4:22). Yes, we and everyone else will really know what we have done to God, others and ourselves, and this horrible reality will stay with us for all eternity as we are tormented for rejecting God for the devil (sin).
“Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name? Did we not drive out demons in your name? Did we not do mighty deeds in your name?’ Then I will declare to them solemnly, ‘I never knew you [your faith was a lie]. Depart from me, you evildoers [who still desire yourselves, sin and the world instead of Me.]” (Matthew 7:22-23).
Oh, we can’t allow this to occur again. We must do all we can to prevent one more soul from dying.
But, who today is warning us of our impending doom, telling us if we stay complacent with any of our sins we are rejecting Heaven for Hell? Christians are supposed to be saving souls. But we aren’t. Who is teaching us The Way?
Who is giving us Fear of the Lord? This is the singular ingredient that if the devil removes from our understanding, we are dead.
What has happened? Oh, the evil one, who “disguises himself as an angel of light” (2 Corinthians 11:14), lured us into believing him with many words of love and truth… Oh, he preached The Way correctly one minute, telling us things we wanted to hear, so we would think he was guiding us properly. Then, when we weren’t looking (trusted him), he robbed us of our fear of sin and then stripped us of bounds of other truths as well. Now, we won’t know The Way, and we are even teaching this confusion to others. To learn more please read, “What Does Evil Look Like?”
Please know, the devil doesn’t have to make us into monsters for us to be damned, all he needs to do is remove our fear of God, then we belong to him.
True contrition, true humility and true love of God are all founded on having Fear of the Lord. As was said, praying and trying to live The Word without having at least some amount of Fear of the Lord (some fear of sin and its consequences) won’t lead to Life… all of it will be in vain. “If anyone fears the Lord he will show him the path he should choose.” (Psalm 25). We must come to understand this. Yet, who today really fears they could go to Hell because of their sins?
Oh, is anyone trying to give us this blessed fear and/or helping us grow in humility and contrition, so it can become true enough to accept God’s forgiving saving mercy… is anyone trying to save us? No. We are all lost and dying! To learn more please read, “What is Fear of the Lord?”
“I am warning you, as I warned you before: those who do such things [commit mortal sin] will not inherit the kingdom of God.” (Galatians 5:21).
Yes, The Word and the saints of the past have warned us… but who today? Where are the people and the priests trying to save the lost? There is no one, because nobody can see.
Darkness Has Come
Yes, the time we have read about in The Bible–that we knew was coming–has finally arrived; “For darkness shall cover the earth, and thick darkness [over] the peoples (Isaiah 60:2). Only someone with a special grace would be able to see in such a time, which is why I am re-sending the warnings of the saints and speaking so clearly.
Please know, “a third of their [the Church’s] light [knowledge] was darkened” (Revelations 8:12) some time ago, and now, the rest of the light has been stamped out. We are suffering from great darkness over the entire Church… as prophesied: “[we have been] plunged into [total] darkness” (Revelations 16:10).… and now we don’t know how to obtain Eternal Life.
But of course we don’t know we are living in this reality, because of the very darkness we are living in. Most tragically, many think we are vastly “holy”, when sadly, we are dead and don’t even understand the first step towards Life (fear of the Lord). It is tragic! Yet, now God’s mercy is giving us a chance to see, so we can flee from the sins we are living in and come to live the true faith, before it is too late. Praise God… let’s open our eyes.
“Then I heard another voice from heaven saying, ‘Come out of her [don’t follow the lost of My Church], my people so that you do not take part in her sins, and so that you do not share in her plagues [and die]; for her sins are heaped high as heaven, and God has remembered her iniquities [her sins aren’t forgiven/her punishment will be great!]'” (Revelation 18:2-5).
Yes, we must leave the lost and follow the saints or we will die. But to open our eyes, so we can see and change, we need to fully understand, the “darkness” The Word speaks about in Revelations isn’t a “literal” darkness (no sun) like some have been deceived into believing but a vast spiritual darkness, with all sorts of plagues/illness being spread–spiritual lies–that are killing us.
These prophecies of the darkness to come were never meant to be taken in a perfect literal sense, which is why nobody could understand or see them. But many of them have already come true. If you now have wisdom, you can see.
“There shall come over the whole earth an intense darkness lasting three days and three nights [what The Father considers three days, which is not long considering the span of humanity]. Nothing can be seen [nobody will know The Way], and the air will be laden with pestilence [lies of how to obtain happiness will be everywhere]…. It will be impossible to use any man-made lighting during this darkness [no man will see], except blessed candles [someone with a special grace].
He, who out of curiosity [over the sin others are partaking in], opens his window to look out [see’s the sin], or leaves his home [to partake in the sin], will fall dead on the spot [will reject God for the sin like everyone else]… priests massacred Churches [Churches destroyed by the priests preaching a false truth] shall be closed [from Covid], but only for a short time.”
–St. Anna-Maria Taigi (Catholic Prophecy, Yves Dupont, Par. 48)
Yes, we are in the time of great darkness; these lies have tricked us–the shepherd and the sheep alike– into loving sin, desiring/lusting for the pleasures of the world and living for ourselves (not God and the salvation of others). We have been “led astray to idols” (1 Corinthians 12:2) and our hearts are torn… we don’t seek God alone. We have many idols that we run to for happiness instead of Our Lord and Savior (as explained later).
“Therefore God gave them up in the lusts [desires] of their hearts to impurity [all they wanted that wasn’t God and the world became dark]… because they exchanged the truth about God [being the true source of happiness] for a lie [believing sin or some created thing will satisfy the longings of the heart]” (Romans 1:24-2).
Horribly, now we are infested with illness (false understanding/false love/false faith), since we went out and partook in the lies, and now we are very ill and don’t know The Way to Heaven. It will take much medicine (grace) to even enlighten us to how sick we are, never mind cure us.
Yes, as foreshadowed from of old, there is a “mortal, prophesy against the shepherds” (Ezekiel 34:2)… all of the shepherds and the sheep (for the most part) are living as dead. We have been killed by the lies.
“[From their rejection of the True Faith for idols], He [God] will destroy the glory of his forest [His Church] and of his fruitful garden, both soul and body, And it will be as when a sick person wastes away [slowly looses understanding of The Truth until it is all gone]. And the rest of the trees of his forest [His sheep who didn’t fall away to idols] will be so small in number that a child could write them down”…
Now on that day [when the Light of Israel/The True Faith is shown] the remnant of Israel [the sheep left who didn’t fall away to idols], and those of the house of Jacob who have escaped [who repented for their idol worship and sought to live The Truth], will no longer rely on the one who struck them [the prideful deceived leaders of the faith], but will truly rely on the Lord, the Holy One of Israel.” (Isaiah 10:18-19).
Now, please don’t think someone outside of the Catholic Church (the only Church Christ Himself founded) is doing any better. No. Others abandonment of the true faith, when the anti-christ tricked them through their pride into believing another way is better–suffer from much deception as well–which won’t lead them to Life but death.
Please know, the other churches don’t have the vast means we need to receive the GRACE necessary to sincerely come to hate sin (to save us). They don’t have the sacraments of God’s Church (confession, Mass, etc.) that send fantastic grace to help us. They don’t have the Mother of God’s help directly from Heaven, nor the saints (examples, teachings), nor the traditions from the apostles (showing us what we should be doing), nor The Catechism (The Directions to Life authored by the saints… but only the correct Latin version–since false interpretation exists in at least the English version) all of which leads to a saving faith, if we live it correctly.
PLEASE don’t be deceived. Eternity is forever. God’s Church is The Way… but we simply can’t follow the lost of the Church; we must follow its saints.
To learn more please read, “How to Save Souls.” and “The Time of Great Darkness” because The Word and the prophets have clearly spoken about this truth (darkness coming). We should have known.
“Prepare to live three days [a short period of time] in total darkness. These three days [when nobody knows The Way] are very close… And in these days they will remain as dead [without saving grace] without eating or drinking [without receiving grace from the Body and Blood of Christ]. Then the light [of true knowledge] will return. But many will be the men who will not see it anymore [still won’t be able to see/understand The Way].”
–St. Padrie Pio (Letter to Superior 1959)
Yes, the three days St. Padre Pio spoke about has arrived and we are living in such times. But to keep us living in the dark, the evil one–who’s goal is to deceive us–will have us come up with a jillion reasons why this just isn’t true. Not only will he pride us into believing we are too holy and knowledgeable to have such a lack of faith… to be so deceived, He will also have us misinterpret The Bible and the saints all to keep us blind so we can’t repent and change.
If we believe something different than what The Catechism of the Catholic Church (the true teachings of the faith… authored by the saints) and the saints teach in their books, we are being deceived. We don’t have more wisdom than the saints. Satan only wants us thinking we do, so we will die blind believing a lie.
He will convince us, we aren’t one of the damned, so we can remain dead and even remove our fear for others, so we won’t be concerned with our or others salvation and neglect going to God correctly for help to save us (to change our hearts).
Oh, perhaps he might trick us into procrastinating thinking we have tomorrow to change… that you don’t have time right now to make a real commitment to grow in faith or that you still love your sins too much to really leave them today, but then tomorrow never comes. Oh, how many souls have ruined the tomorrows that God gave them to change. And now the time that was allotted to change is gone and they’re banished into Hell for all eternity. Please don’t be deceived from our pride. “The time is fulfilled [your end is coming], and the kingdom of God [Judgement] is at hand [He is speaking to you]; repent, and believe in the gospel [live the faith that saves… leave your sins for Christ]” (Mark 1:15).
Oh, Our Lord wants to save us, the shepherd and the sheep alike…“The Lord will arise upon you, and his glory will appear over you [just open your eyes to see Him]” (Isaiah 60:2).
Now, please don’t go and think the end of the world is now upon us… that simply isn’t true. After this prophecy in Revelation is fulfilled, which is when the lie is crushed (the truth is brought to the Light) and all those leaders of the faith living the lie are in shame and their mighty power has fallen, which happens in “one hour [according to The Father, which is very fast]” (Revelation 18:10), then afterwards, “a shoot will spring from the stem of Jesse [A new humble Holy Spirit guided Vicar of Christ]” (Isaiah 11:1) will come, and the light of truth in The Church will be restored (Revelations 19:6-8).
“Then it will happen on that day that the Lord Will again recover with His hand [His Church] the second time” (Isaiah 11:11).
Next, as Revelations 20 tells us, “He [an angel] seized the dragon, that ancient serpent, who is the Devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years [1000 years according to The Father, which is a long time].” Therefore, there will be many years when people actually love God, since the devil will be out of the picture for those years, and these people will be the “great multitude” of saves souls Revelations 7:9 speaks about. But tragically, we won’t be able to see this during our time on earth, since that is much in the future.
But, the end of time (which isn’t even what we think it is) is far from now. So the only thing we need to concern ourselves with is our own end and that of our neighbor’s, which is rapidly approaching. If you have ears that can hear, now is the time to repent and change and follow Christ to Heaven. Your eternity is going to begin soon… very soon. Where is it going to be?
“Make us know the shortness of our life that we may gain wisdom of heart” (Psalm 90:)
Our Inclination to Sin
We are all born with different personalities and inclinations towards sin. If we have had children, we can clearly see how each child is more prone to certain sinful behaviors than another. Neither are without sin, but they all desire different sins. One is more stubborn and strong willed. The other is more fearful and not trusting. While another is more devious and manipulative. And yet another is quite vain and self-concerned. And yet, another is materialistic and perhaps short tempered. Anyway, as we all know, we are all inclined to different sins… but regardless, no matter how we acquired the desire for any sin, to act upon that inclination is still quite wrong.
For some sins, the evil one has deceived us into believing, if we are “born” we a certain inclination that somehow makes it not sinful. But of course that is the deceiver tricking us, so we die without repenting of our sins. Therefore, we simply can’t pretend like any of our sins are acceptable, no matter if we were born with the inclination towards them or acquired it through life. All sins are very wrong.
Yet, many are deceived into thinking living as a homosexual is not sinful, even though The Word over and over again clearly says it is. “Sodom, Gomorrah, and the surrounding towns, which, in the same manner as they, indulged in sexual promiscuity and practiced unnatural vice, serve as an example by undergoing a punishment of eternal fire“ (Jude 1:7).
Living a life as a homosexual is far from the life of purity and sanctity we must desire to have Eternal Life. Well, what I really mean is, just like with any sin, being tempted to sin–act as a homosexual–isn’t sinful, but acting upon that temptation (sinning) is. And if we don’t repent and change, it merits us horrific tortures (the consequences we choose) in Hell for all eternity based on the sins we have committed but never repented of with true contrition.
“God handed them over to degrading passions. Their females exchanged natural relations for unnatural, and the males likewise gave up natural relations with females and burned with lust for one another. Males did shameful things with males and thus received in their own persons the due penalty for their perversity”(Romans 1:26-27).
I know it might be hard to avoid those temptations if we suffer from them–some of which we suffer from because of our own sins and others from the sins of our ancestors, since God is “inflicting punishment for their ancestors’ wickedness on the children of those who hate me, down to the third and fourth generation” (Exodus 20:5
Plenty of sins are very hard to avoid, but they are still sins. All sin hurts God, whom we should be seeking to perfectly love. And acting homosexual is a grave sin (mortal); it greatly rejects God’s grace and severely offends Him. We must gain a great hatred for it. We must be willing to suffer rather than offend God. We must love Him over ourselves if we wish to be saved.
Also, please know, it doesn’t matter if we were born with those temptations. Many people are born with vast sins we desire and are tempted into committing. We must still work hard to leave them. If we have had children, we know each one is given different virtues (qualities of Christ) and different vices (desires for sin). Some children are inclined to be selfish and others perhaps are easily angered.
Regardless, even though they were born with those sinful desires (dispositions) and fall into those temptations, that doesn’t mean we ignore our child’s selfishness and/or anger and tell them those behaviors are good. They aren’t. They are sinful and offend God, whether they were born inclined towards them or not.
When we see our children sinning or desiring a sin, we need to teach them what the correct, non-sinful behavior is. We need to give them coping mechanisms (resolutions) to avoid the sin and teach them how to pray and visit the sacraments, so to seek God’s assistance in removing those sins/desires for sin from our lives. Perhaps, we will have to exercise discipline and restraint our entire lives to not fall into those sins, if the temptations continue, which is what we need to do to not offend God. Yet, one shouldn’t expect that.
Once we learn how to reject temptation, besides a test now and then, the devil should eventually leave us alone. But regardless, sodomy or any un-natural sex is still horribly offensives against God. And if ignored or justified it as good, we will perish into eternal suffering from desiring those sins over loving God. Please don’t be deceived. Remember, we don’t have to have sex to Live, but we do have to love God (truly hate our sins and sincerely never want to commit them again).
Therefore, if we want to be saved, we must truly want to see and admit our sins. But, how many of us don’t want to repent; we want to stay in our sins so greatly, we pretend like we don’t or hardly even sin, especially if we are confronted with an error. Then, from our pride, hating to be corrected, we become offended, angry, conceal our offences and/or continue in them, which is damning our souls. That isn’t what someone does, who wants to see their sins, so we can amend them.
Yet, how often do we do this… try to prove ourselves right, refuse to admit our errors? Focusing on what we perceive as another’s wrongs just so we can’t see our own offences, hoping to build up our pride. Yet, refusing to admit/to confess just ONE sin kills. “You run the risk of perishing… being lost forever, [since] you have concealed a sin.” as St. John Vianney, teaches in his sermon on Easter confession. Concealing a sin isn’t true repentance.
When we have a truly repentant heart, we are humble enough to admit our sins. But our pride has us doing all sorts of horrible things to stay in our sins and not repent. But I tell you, if we aren’t refusing to admit our wrongs, we are doing plenty of other things that prevent us from truly repenting. Sadly, we ignore, think little of and don’t want to see or admit many of our sins which proves we don’t really care that we are offending God and don’t have true repentance with so many of our sins. We care more about our pride. Where is our love for God?
“[There are] faults of which they think little [of], and what is still worse, they defend them as if they were virtues [not sins], and will not be corrected for them. These faults place the soul in great peril of eternal damnation [if they don’t repent].”
–God the Father to St. Gertrude the Great (Life and Revelation, Part 4, Ch.2)
How Do We Respond to Our Suffering (The Cross)?
To help us see if we are living the faith correctly or not, we need to look into how we respond to the cross. There is no easier way to “test yourselves” (2 Corinthians 13:5) than how we respond to God’s tests: our challenges/sufferings in life.
Sure some of us can put false smiles on our faces during all that happens. These smiles don’t come from our great faith and trust in God’s will, but from our great pride, as we take the grace (patience, calmness, etc.) that God bestowed upon us at birth and try to show off how “good” we are compared to others.
“The lukewarm Christian appears gay [happy, when things go well enough for him], but grief gnaws at his heart: while the just man, though his life be one of penance [in sorrow for his sins], has happiness within his soul [knowing God is saving him].”
–St. John of Avila (Letter 13, #92)
But most of us can’t continue to put on a show and do have direct negative responses to the cross, which are easily seen. And these negative responses are meant to help us see how we need to change.
When we live the faith correctly and are in the state of grace, we have accepted God’s grace and have been given the fruits of the Spirit… not some of them, but all of them.
“The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control” (Galatians 5:22-23).
Now, like was said, some people are born with many or even all of these gifts in good measure and others have acquired them during their life, and for us, who have many of theses, it is harder to see how we are clinging to our sins, if our outward behavior seems “holy,” if we don’t know how to examine our conscience properly. For many look great on the outside but on the inside is corruption and pride.
However, regardless of what gifts we were born with or have acquired, when we accept God’s saving grace our habitual sins–the sins we made part of our lives… the sins we have such a great liking for that we used to repeat over and over again–are now gone (no longer habitually repeated). Sure we still commit sin, but not habitually from having a desire for the sin. Unrestrained habitual sin is clear proof of having a love for sin, which is what most of us suffer from.
Therefore, if we want to see how we are dying, let’s look at how we respond to the cross, so we can learn what sins we need to leave. If we are living the faith correctly and growing into a saving faith, from accepting God’s great transforming mercy, we will consistently live in GREAT “PEACE” (Galatians 5:22), especially during our crosses.
Of course, we will still be in pain and weep/grieve over our and others sins; if we didn’t do that, what kind of love for God/contrition (sorrow) for our sins would we have? But, when we are living the faith correctly, we will have accepted God’s grace from trusting in Him and we will no longer be in distress when what we don’t want happens… when “bad” happens… even our sins won’t distress us, since we know God loves the sinner (wants to save the sinner), and if we can see them, we have the opportunity to amend them.
This peace will reign in us because we have grown enough in our faith to sincerely trust in all God allows… knowing it leads to our good, which gives us a great LOVE FOR THE CORSS. We won’t run to God in despair begging and pleading for our will (what we think is best) to be done. Sure we will pray for what we think is good, especially when bad happens, but at the same time we will surrender to God’s will and trust in what God allows as being truly good. Never fretting when bad occurs or when our prayers aren’t answered according to our will, but peacefully accepting what ever has occurred as leading to good, waiting for God to make it good..
Actually, we will want our crosses (if God wants us to have them) not only so we can offer up our suffering for the salvation of souls (us and others)–so God can send grace through the cross, to help us in our daily lives–but, from our trust in all God allows, we know we NEED the cross: to teach us our sins, to show us how to change and to send grace from accepting our suffering as God’s heavenly will to help us grow in faith for the salvation of our souls and atonement for our sins (to make us saints).
“A good Christian, my friends, is seldom occupied with the things of the earth… he lets his HAPPINESS CONSIST IN CROSSES, tribulations, prayer, fasting and the thought of God. Now, the lukewarm Christian loses his trust in God [and frets during the cross], though, perhaps, not entirely.”
–St. John Vianney (How you can tell whether you belong to the lukewarm)
The saints know the cross is the way to Christ… to a life and eternity of great peace. When we truly trust in God, we know the cross is intended to move us into a saving faith and sanctity. We know God will make something good out of something very bad. We truly believe all God allows is for the good of our souls, so when we have true faith in God, we know He is using the cross to help save us and o (to help us become like Him)… so we live in “great peace” (Pslam 119:165), from our trust in Him. To learn more please read, “How to Find True Happiness.”
Are we living in consistent fantastic peace during all moments of our lives from truly trusting in God? If not, then we know our repeated sins–our frustrations, impatience, anger, etc.–when things don’t go well (not wanting God’s will)–are God clearly telling us we are not living the faith correctly and are still rejecting God’s saving forgiving mercy for those sins.
So let’s look at our lives. How are we lacking Christ’s peace–sinning–and not working to amend them? How do we respond when we are threatened with becoming sick… are we still doing God’s will, trusting in all God allows as part of God’s plan for the good of our souls; or are we worried, not wanting the cross if He wills it? How about if we have more work than we think we can do…. do we surrender to God’s will and just do the best we can, accepting whatever that is as good; or are we stressed… feeling overwhelmed… snapping at others… feeling embarrassed if we are less than perfect? All which is proof of our lack of grace?
How about when we lose something/someone we love… are we accepting what God allows as being what He intends to use for our good, if we allow Him; or are we distressed or even in despair… wanting what or who we lost back? How about, when we are tired and still have to work… are we rejoicing in our cross happily bearing it for the love of God; or are we short tempered, doing poor quality work just it get done?
How do we act when others treat us badly… do love the cross and are grateful we have an opportunity to conform our lives with Christ; or do we reject the cross (don’t want to suffer like Christ), and complain, have self-pity, perhaps even gossip or become angry about what our offender has done to us, from our lack of forgiveness? How about when someone makes a mistake or doesn’t do what we want and gives us a burden… are we understanding, forgiving and willing carry the cross God allowed us to bear; or are we intolerant of others imperfection, full of complaint, demanding they do what we want, and/or wanting them to pay for what they have done? Please know, the man who is angry at others for the wrong they do, doesn’t really know his own sinfulness nor the mercy of God shown to Him.
How do we respond when we are hungry, tired or in pain… are we loving our crosses offering them up for the salvation of souls; or are we impatient, grumpy and treating others poorly? How about when we can’t do something from lacking talent… do we love who God made knowing He will use us, if we allow Him, with the skills we have, for whatever plan He has for our lives; or do we have self-pity, putting ourselves down wishing we were someone we aren’t? What about when someone criticizes/corrects us… do we happily look for our faults, since we want to know where we go wrong, so we can change or do we become offended, deny their claims and/or seek to criticize them in return, desiring to boost our pride?
Truly, are our problems, sufferings, losses, sicknesses, exhaustion, mistreatment’s–problems (crosses) in life–causing us to live outside of peace with complaints, worries, angers (unforgiveness), frustrations, fears, loneliness, self-pity, jealousies, resentments, anxieties, selfishness, being grumpy, upset and/or offended, etc.? If so, then we need to seek Mercy to change us. We aren’t living the faith correctly. God intends to bring us to Him (a saving faith, a life of great peace) through each cross. The cross is supposed to be making us stronger. Let’s learn how to embrace God’s grace from the cross, not reject it.
So, how do we respond to the cross? If we aren’t consistently in trusting peace, happily carrying our crosses, during ALL God allows, saying “Thy will be done” as we do the best we can, accepting that as good, “rejoice[ing] in our sufferings” (Romans 5:3), seeking to LEARN and grow from each cross… trusting in God to bring good out of them, then something is wrong.
We simply aren’t surrendering our will for God’s; we love/desire what we want more and fret when we don’t get it. Yet, “abandonment to the will of God is the secret of happiness on earth” as St. Josemaria Escriva teaches in His book “The Way” (#767). To learn more please read, “How to Love the Cross.”
Truly, our repeated unrestrained negative behaviors in response to the cross (God’s will) are only normal behaviors for those of us living outside of God’s saving grace, who still desire sin (self-love/our will), who still don’t love God’s Law, trust in Him or want to follow Him to Heaven. Please don’t be deceived.
Great peace have those who love your law; nothing can make them stumble” (Psalm 119:165).
There are several different kinds of idols. The more obvious idols, like Buda or other known “gods,” that we turn to and seek for happiness… and then there the pleasures of the world, the people, power and possessions that we seek to satisfy us.
Our hearts aren’t supposed to seek anything/anyone but God. We are supposed to be fixed on God–He wants to be Our Savior (our source of happiness). But, since the devil has caught us, we have it on idols: what we seek for happiness instead of God and His will.
Oh, we might say we desire God, but our thoughts and actions prove very clearly we still desire the world and all of its pleasures.
“Do not love the world or the things in the world. The love of the Father is not in those who love the world” (1 John 2:15).
Honestly, what do we seek or need for happiness? What is your mind on all day as you work or relax? Is it on God… Your Lord… Your Heart’s Desire and how you can more perfectly love Him: serve Him, stop offending Him, save the souls of His children and do His will? Or is your mind on a billion other things: like perhaps, your next great meal, or getting together with your friends, or an accomplishment you seek, or a hobby, or a sport, or the news, or sex, or vanity, or some movie you just watched or even want to watch, or any number of things we have given our hearts and minds to instead of God… the source of true happiness.
We should have been spending our lives seeking God’s mercy to help us GROW in faith… to learn how to really follow Christ, so we can leave desiring all of those worldly things, so our hearts can desire God and be in the Light. For, “whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life [will know how to obtain Heaven]” (John 8:12). But we haven’t and now we live in darkness, desiring bounds of things of the world… things that aren’t God or His will and we don’t know The Way.
“Repent and turn away from your idols; and turn away your faces from all your abominations” (Ezekiel:14:6).
Oh, how hard it is to come to truly hate the world: our sins and idols, so to sincerely die to the world/sin, when we have spent our life time loving the world, frequently committing and/or desiring so many sins and idols!
“Unless they resolve to die to the world [lose their desire for sin and their idols], and in reality do so, without doubt will die a bad death, and be condemned with the world… the whole law, and the understanding of it, and its observance, and the way to eternal life, depend [on it].”
–St. Robert Bellarmine (The Art of Dying Well, Ch.2)
We must work hard to leave this world of distractions and idolatry, which keeps us from loving God and accepting His grace, and seek to fill our every second with wanting to Love God. If we won’t “well then, what chance have you of making progress in the virtue of holy life [towards salvation], if you never think of him who should be the SOLE object of your thoughts?” as St. John Baptist de La Salle wrote to a Brother (Sept. 1709).
Oh, how many idols do we have?
“It pains me to see so many pitiful blind people fleeing hurriedly from the very gracious offer [Eternal Life] of the Master… My soul is extremely distressed when I see these truly blind people… who’s passions [for the world] have robbed them of wisdom… They are constantly on fire with thousands of desires for earthly satisfactions… Jesus extends his very tender invitation to come and drink the living water [that changes our hard hearts that love sin and the world], but… what response does he get from these wretched people [they still want the world instead of Him]?”
–St. Padre Pio, (Letter, Oct. 10, 1915)
Oh, we don’t know our faith. Who even knows what an idol is anymore? Is anyone trying to leave them? “Put to death therefore [lose our liking for] what is earthly in you: immorality, impurity, passion [wanting our will], evil desire [desire for sin], and covetousness [wanting what we don’t have], which is idolatry” (Colossians 3:5).
Yes, our idols are everything we repeatedly desire in our day that is of this world “earthly”… it is everything we long for that isn’t God or His will. Our hearts are supposed to be set on God, attached to Him. He should be our heart’s desire. We should “love the Lord, your God, with your whole heart, and with your whole being, and with your whole strength” (Deuteronomy 6:4-5). But so sadly, we are seeking everything but Him. Oh, we have allowed the evil one to make us so pitifully blind, as we chase after all our hearts really desire… which isn’t God.
“Blessed are those who wash their robes [allowed Christ to purify them of their sins/idols], that they may have the right to the tree of life and that they may enter the city by the gates [to Heaven]. Outside are the… idolaters, and every one who loves and practices falsehood [sin]” (Revelations 22:14-15).
If we are able to honestly look into what we are thinking about and seeking throughout our day, we will see our minds aren’t really on God, loving and trusting in Him… wanting Him and His will, but on our problems, our praises (boasting) and our desires for pleasure. We sinners, who should be living a life of penance, are “full of plunder [sin] and self-indulgence” (Matthew 23:25). Sadly, from being so far from the path of Life, “[we have become] lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God” (2 Timothy 3:4). God help us!
Sure we might be considering God while we are at church, if we do go, but plenty of of our time after that we give to sin (whatever we desire that isn’t God or His will). Sadly, for most of our time, our thoughts are on everything but God and His will. Truly, we have many distractions we suffer from and idols we seek–attachments to the world. We simply don’t desire God alone and have “grieved His Holy Spirit” (Isaiah 63:10).
Yet, just ONE idol/attachment we don’t obtain a true hatred for–gain a true desire to never want again–condemns us forever. Please, we must wake up from our sleep of death–living with no fear of sin, loving sin and the world–so “may He not come suddenly and find you sleeping [unprepared]”(Mark 13:36).
Yet, please know, the greater the sins we commit and the greater the attachments (idols) we have, the more greatly we wound God and push Him away; so we need to begin to leave our sins and idols today. Truly, it takes much time (much grace) to pull our hearts and minds off of the world/sin and give it to God, so we can become attached to Him, so we can go to Heaven. Oh, we really need Mercy to change us!
“The soul that has attachment to anything, however much virtue [qualities of Christ] it possess, will not attain to the liberty of Divine union [will not be united to God while on earth and is only saved if he is (so fortunate enough) to gain a true hatred/true contrition for them, at least, upon our death and then is purified/atoned of those attachments in Purgatory to be welcomed into Heaven].”
–St. John of the Cross, Doctor of The Church, (The Ascent of Mt. Carmel, Ch. 11)
We Are Bad Christians, Who Need Help
Yes, we have much to change and God is waiting to help us. But please also know, no one can become a saint, go to Heaven or Purgatory, or even receive Holy Communion (without punishment) if we are complacent with any of our sins. This is of upmost importance we understand this.
This means to even receive Holy Communion, we MUST hate sin enough that we sincerely desire to become a perfect saint (never want to sin again). Our desire can’t just be in thought alone. No. We must be willing to suffer (deny ourselves of what we want) to see that this happens. We must hate sin enough that we will seek Christ daily, from having fear of offending Him, to help us grow in our hatred for our sins so it can become so great so it can become true.
Then from there, our Communions won’t reject God’s grace, it will allow us to embrace it, so we can grow in our hatred for sin/love for God so it can become true and atone for our life time of sins, and then embrace all of God’s grace, so we can become perfect.
But please know to receive Holy Communion worthily, we must have confessed and stopped all regular moral sins and be working hard: making resolutions, removing what causes us to sin, so to obtain a true hatred for sinning. We must seek Mercy to remove our irregular mortal sin–our venial sins and idols we lack true sorrow/true hatred for. We must be honestly working towards sanctity and not neglecting any of our sins or our Communions won’t benefit us, but lead us into greater and greater damnation.
“Bad Christians receive Thee unworthily, some without contrition [without any sorrow for sinning], others without desire of amendment [don’t have a resolution to amend their sins, lack of resolve to become a saint], others, perhaps, with crime [mortal sin] in their hearts.”
–St. John Vianney
Please know, we don’t have to consistently succeed in our efforts to leave sin, but we must hate sin enough to at least try with a true effort. Holding on to any sin and saying “I will change later” or not putting a sincere effort into changing is not a soul worthy of Holy Communion. To lack a sincere effort or not even want to try to stop offending God with any sin is a horrible state to live in. It is an abomination of love and makes us unworthy for Holy Communion and of course damned.
Receiving in this state of sin is horrible, but pretending like we sincerely want to leave our sins when we still don’t is even worse. It is a blessing to be able to be honest with ourselves. Many can’t. May it lead us to Life.
Therefore, if we can be honest with ourselves and see we don’t have this kind of faith yet–that truly wants to leave all sin/idols and is willing to follow Christ/do His will one step at a time to change so to become a real self-sacrificing saint–then we must wait and seek that faith through God’s grace by confession, prayer, fasting, penance and works, before we receive Holy Communion, or we are harming God and damaging our souls. “Whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord unworthily will have to answer for the body and blood of the Lord” (1 Corinthians 11:27).
Holy Communion is supposed to help us to sin no more, not confuse us into thinking we are saved because we receive. Yes, with the Eucharist is our hope. But nobody can receive Holy Communion wanting to offend God with any sin. Please don’t be deceived. Do you REALLY want to leave all of your sins and the world’s pleasures you crave, so to love God? If not, then you need to abstain from The Holy Eucharist until God sends you the grace needed to desire to truly love Him and be willing to suffer (deny yourself of what you want) to do it. To learn more please read, “How to Receive Holy Communion Worthily.”
Oh, we must learn how to love God and not our sin! Eternity is forever.
“Oh, Christians… Let us now, for love of the Lord, awake from this sleep [of death/sin and seek Our Savior to save us]…. these Christians can make amends and be saved — [yet] it fears that many are being condemned [since they don’t know The Way to Heaven].”
–St. Teresa of Avila, Doctor of the Church (Meditations on the Song of Songs Ch. 4 #246; Interior Castle V.2 #345)
Truly, the saints aren’t lying… tragically, most Christians and everyone for that matter aren’t saved, especially during this time of darkness. From being mislead, God’s children don’t understand what are the requirements for salvation.
The devil has greatly deceived us. Yes, from the “deceiving power…[we have] believed the lie”… and if we don’t learn the truth and change, we will “be condemned” (2 Thessalonians 2:11-13). To learn more please read, “What Are the Requirements of Salvation?”
“We see that death [denying ourselves of our desires of the flesh/dying to sin] is gain, life [gaining all we desire] is loss. Paul says: For me life is Christ, and death a gain. What does “Christ” mean but to die in the body [lose our desire for sin], and receive the breath of life [obtain saving grace]?…
The law of our fallen nature [desiring sin] is at war with the law of our reason [desiring God]… What is the remedy? Who will set me free from this body of death? THE GRACE OF GOD, through Jesus Christ, our Lord.
–St. Ambrose, Doctor of the Church, (Book on the death of his brother Satyrus)
Therefore, let’s learn how to seek Grace to save us. Truly, Christ didn’t come and die to give us a free rein to sin. No. “Jesus went throughout Galilee, teaching” (Matthew 4:25), so we can obtain the grace needed to desire to no longer offend Him for the salvation of our souls.
Yes, He came to teach us The Way to Heaven… to teach us how to truly love God… to teach us how to lose our slavery to sin (become a new creation)… to teach us how to obtain true belief in Him: a belief that believes so greatly that Jesus is Lord that we would rather die than to not follow/obey Him… Yes, Christ came to teach us how to obtain a saving faith and then sanctity. To learn more please read, “Why Did Jesus Die for Our Sins?”
After we grow in faith and die to sin (lose our desire for sin), then we can accept and KEEP His saving forgiving mercy He died to give us. This is how Christ saves us.
“By one man’s obedience many will be made righteous [through Baptism]. Law came in, to increase the [punishment of] trespass; but where sin increased, grace abounded [to help amend and forgive them increased] all the more, so that, as [unrepentant] sin reigned in death, grace also might reign through righteousness [for those forgiven of their sins] to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord [who sends the grace for living the faith and obtaining forgiveness].
What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin [truly hate sin] still live in it [continue in it]? Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death [we must suffer like Him so to die to sin/come to truly hate sin, if we are to Live]?” (Romans 5:19-6:3).
Hopefully, through the rest of this article, from the help of God’s grace, Our Lord will enlighten us to some of the vast ways we are being deceived, so we may grow in faith correctly into a saving faith. Praise Jesus!
God is Being Patient with You
Yet, despite all we have done wrong, God still wants us in Heaven. His love is never ending. “How precious is your steadfast love, O God!” (Psalm 36:7).
Yes, of course, He has anger and great disappointment towards us, and rightly so. But it is an anger and disappointment of a loving father, who wants to move a child to make the right choices so to avoid injury.
“The discipline of the Lord, my son, do not spurn; do not disdain his reproof; For whom the Lord loves he reproves, as a father, the son he favors” (Proverbs 3:11-12).
But God doesn’t always love us (try to save us) by showing us His anger and disappointment towards us with punishments and allowing us to suffer greatly as a consequence of our sins. No, actually, even though we might see many punishments from God, which are meant to spur us to change, most of the time (unless there is no other way or that isn’t the greatest good), God is loving us with blessings to help move us into sincerely following/loving Him.
So please know, when God shows us His love–by blessing us–that is Him being “patient with you, not wanting any to perish, but all to come to [true] repentance” (2 Peter 3:9). God shows His love, because He is wanting us to love Him in return (to stop offending Him/to live for His will, so He can save us)… that is Him trying to motivate us to move in the right direction towards Life–to live for His will, since He doesn’t want us to reject Him and die.
But, we must know, when God loves us sinners that is in no way Him approving of our life of sin, so we stay cold or lukewarm deceiving ourselves into believing we are “holy” or even saved. “For he makes his sun rise on the bad and the good” (Matthew 5:45).
“I have often witnessed, God withdraws people [or at least tries to] from harmful pleasures, and even from grievous sins, by sending them His sweet consolations [through our prayers and works].”
–St. John of Avila (Letter to St. Teresa, #20)
All God does is for our salvation (to move us towards a saving faith). “Consider that Our Lord’s patience is direct towards salvation.” (2 Peter 3:15). Through His acts of love for us, He wants us to become on fire with love for Him and salvation… not just for us but for our neighbor as well. He wants us striving to become saints every single day… working hard to perfectly obey Him (to do His will). Every day we don’t, is a day we are complacent with our lives of sin.
Yet, it is our pride that takes all of God’s blessings and convinces us that we are “holy” people because of them, so we can remain blind to our sinfulness.
Sadly, most of us are so deceived, we are far from even understanding what we should be doing to become saints. There is such deception being preached that we either think being a saint isn’t obtainable to us or the journey has been depicted so wrongly, many think we are working towards becoming saints, when, we haven’t even begun The Way. Tragic!
How many of us think we are working towards becoming a saint if we pray a lot and do many good works… okay, well saints do that, but seeking true sanctity is so much more. Really it is a surrender of our will completely for God’s, so God can change us by following Him: by the way of humility, suffering and sacrificing (the cross).
“Would that I could persuade spiritual persons that the way to God consist not in the multiplicity of meditations, ways of devotions or sweetness [experiencing God’s love], though these may be necessary for beginners [to be motivated to begin the journey], but in one necessary thing only, in knowing how to deny themselves [of everything in the world that keeps them from loving God]… giving themselves up to suffer for Christ’s sake, and annihilating themselves [destroy their pride/will] utterly… There is no progress but in the following of Christ.”
–St. John of the Cross, (Accent to Mount Carmel Ch. 7)
But please know, real saints… not the lukewarm saint that is preached, but people who really leave the world to love God, no longer care about restaurants, conversations, praise, entertainment, fashion, sports, technology nor any of that stuff in the world any more. All of them only want to spend their time knowing, loving, and serving God.
Before, I decided I wanted to stop offending God, I had a great passion for figure skating and photography, and gave much of my life in pursuit of success with them, among other things… my heart was far wanting God and His will alone… seeking to love Him. But now, I could careless about those worldly things. Sure, if my kids want to go ice skating I will go, but I don’t seek it for personal pleasure. I would even do it to relax my mind (if I ever really felt I needed that) or for fitness reasons (not vanity) if I didn’t feel like I could fall into sin or become attached with frequenting it, since it is good to keep our bodies healthy (if God wills), so we can serve Him well.
Therefore, it isn’t the “pleasure” that is necessarily evil, that is, if we use it for good: to help us better know, love and serve God. But when we haven’t given our lives to Christ, we use the world for self-love… not love of God, and that is what has made the world’s pleasures so deadly in our lives.
And an even a greater problem, is if we agree with these truths, but we love our “pleasures” so much, we will lie to ourselves and “say” we are using them to help them love god, to avoid guilt and “justify” them, since we simply don’t want to leave them. And if such souls don’t realize how we are lying to ourselves, we are doomed.
But when we do give our lives to God, our old-self–that lived for the world and its pleasures–is gone and now a new-self–that lives to suffer and sacrifice and only has eyes for God and His will, with a new clean heart, lives to love God. This must be our goal too… or we will love sin/the world (our idols) over God and choose eternal suffering. Oh, we have much to learn, as is discussed later. To learn more please read, “How to Become a Saint.”
Please know what a great life awaits us, when we leave everything in the world that we run to for happiness, so we can love God… Oh, their is no depression or boredom with this life, just a wonderful life loving God, trusting in His will. Sure getting to this will be hard, but of course it is all worth it.
“Put away your former way of life, your old self, corrupt and deluded by its lusts [for the world’s pleasures], and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds [for God], and to clothe yourselves with the new self [with a pure garment], created according to the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness” (Ephesians 4:22-24).
Live The Faith to be Saved By the Faith
If we want to learn how to love God (gain a hatred for sin), become saved and KEEP God’s saving grace in us–we need to learn how to really live the faith that saves… “Put away all filth and evil excess and humbly welcome The Word [live all of The Word] that has been planted in you and is able to save your souls [change your hardened hearts into ones of true love]” (James 1:21).
“For thus do [for this is how] the faithful keep [are constantly saved], having the Holy Spirit constantly dwelling in them, who was given from Him at baptism and KEPT by the recipient LIVING IN TRUTH AND HOLINESS and righteousness and patience; for it is by this Spirit that the resurrection [salvation] comes to believers.”
–St. Irenaeus of Lyons (On The Apostolic Preaching, The preparation for Salvation #42)
Therefore, not only does living the faith bring us into a saving faith, it keeps us in a state of grace for the salvation of our souls.
To do this, like Saint John the Baptist said, we need to “flee from the wrath to come” (Matthew 3:7) and learn how to be righteous through “fear of the Lord”. Then we can have our sins forgiven, so the fire of God’s anger, which we deserve, won’t come upon us for eternity.
“Whoever [truly] believes in the Son [hates sin/loves God] has eternal life, but whoever disobeys the Son [choses sin instead of Him] will not see life, but the wrath of God remains upon him” (John 3:36).
Wonderfully, from God’s mercy, so we don’t perish, Our Lord spends our entire lives, loving us, blessing us… trying and trying to get us to understand the horror of sin. He sends us fantastic warnings and puishments that should enlighten us to our need for mercy.
“[He] rebuke[s] offenders [us] little by little, warn[s] them, and remind[s] them of the sins they are committing, that they may abandon their wickedness and believe in you [that Your Way of purity is The Way to Heaven]” (Wisdom 12:2).
To see many of God’s warnings, all we need to do is look to see if we are in peace. If we aren’t, then that is from sin. Then we need to look for where we are going wrong, and seek God to show us how to change and strengthen us to do it.
Oh but, perhaps we are one of the few blessed souls, whom God is sending big warnings of our lack of grace, so we can see how we are rejecting His Mercy and need Him, and we are even going backwards: becoming more grumpy, more anxious, more worried, more impatient, more irritable etc… having less and less virtues. We might even think we need to s