33 Sunday of the Ordinary Time ? November 19, 2006 Edmonton
A tramp named Jim would visit a church every day at 3:00pm and pray for ten minutes. The parish priest -let we call him Fr. Roddy- asked him once, why he did this every day at the same time.
The tramp answered that he did so because he knew that Jesus died for him at 3:00pm. Jim said that he kneels down and then says ?Hi, Jesus, it?s me, Jim?. Then Jim explains to Jesus what is going on in his life and left the church.
After a number of years the visits suddenly stopped, and naturally Fr Roddy wondered why.
One day he was in Central Hospital and a doctor told him that people were being miraculously healed on one of the wards, and all because of an old man. When Fr Roddy walked into the ward he nearly fell over at the overpowering presence of God. Then he saw Jim in one of the beds. ?Jim,? he said, ?this is amazing. People are being healed and there?s such a feeling of God here.?
Jim looked up from his bed and replied, ?It?s nothing to do with me, Father. Every day at 3:00pm a man stands at the end of my bed and say, ?Hi Jim. It?s me, Jesus.?
Don?t be afraid of the end of the world if you meet Jesus already in your life.
The first reading from the Book of Daniel talks about the end of time being a time of unsurpassed stress where some who die shall be in everlasting horror and disgrace. The Gospel reading from the Apocalyptical sections of Mark presents the end of time as being the day of tribulations, when the earth will shake and even the stars will fall out of the sky. Scary stuff, this end of the world readings.
The early Christians did not look at the Second Coming and End of Time with terror. Instead they saw it as a time when the Lord would return to his people and correct the injustices of the world. Good people, Christians, were being put to death for the Lord in the most horrible ways. Throughout the world, little children were starving to death while rich people ate heartily. The conquering Romans, like the Greeks and Persians before them, had no respect for any life other than their own and killed the population of whole cities, men, women and children viciously and randomly. During the first tree centuries of Christianity 7 million Christians was killed.
This is not what God created the world to be. The world was suffering from sin. Therefore, the Christians prayed, ?Come, Lord Jesus, Maranatha. Come and recreate your world into your image.?
The world has not changed all that much in its barbarity. People are still killed for whom they are. Just a few years ago we heard about genocide in Europe, in Bosnia, and in Africa in Darfur. Here, in our country, good people are still persecuted when they refuse to join the latest mores of society. If you are not in favor of gay marriage and abortion you will be held up to scorn by many in the academia and the media. The world has not changed that much. People, who hold their convictions tightly to themselves are still persecuted, even put to death in some parts of the world. As I said during the first tree centuries of Christianity 7 million Christians was killed but do you know that only during the last century (in the XX century) 450 million people ? Christians was killed. The world has not changed all that much in its barbarity.
And children are still hungry. Each 3 seconds somewhere in Africa, South America, throughout the world somebody is starving to death.
Are you afraid of the end of the world? Each and every day Jesus is knocking on your door. Don?t be afraid to meet HIM (Jesus) in your daily life, so you will not be afraid to meet Him at the end of your days.
Did you meet Him already? If you didn?t yet ? the end of the world might be for you an absolute surprise.