God doesn’t care about our excuses.
I had recently read about near-death experiences from two priests. They were both enlightening and a bit frightening. In one experience, Father Jose Maniyangat died and saw Heaven, Hell and Purgatory.
This goes back to what Jesus said about how blaspheming the Holy Spirit was the only sure fire way to Hell, because through the Holy Spirit comes forgiveness and mercy to those who seek it.
Those who do not seek the mercy of God, who blaspheme the Holy Spirit, must reside in Hell due to their refusal to seek out God’s forgiveness.
Father Jose saw that Hell was full of fire and torture and fighting and screaming.
Purgatory was full of people who died and committed mortal sins, but had sought God’s mercy and forgiveness. Here they are cleansed of their sins and attraction to sin, especially those sins which we repeated through our life. All of our sins are of great offense to God and all of it must be cleansed before we become worthy to stand in the presence of God.
In another experience, Father Stephen Scheier was shown his life by Jesus and judged accordingly.
Jesus showed him each time he had failed in his life as a priest. Father Stephen had plenty of excuses that he had used during his life to justify his bad decisions, but in the face of Jesus, in the face of the Truth, there are no excuses.
At the end of the evaluation he could do nothing but agree that his eternal fate belonged in Hell.
Through God’s mercy and Mary’s prayers was Father Scheier given another chance.
Will we be so lucky?
Can you imagine that moment? Can you imagine standing next to the Creator, looking through your life, you’re fully armed with a lifetime of excuses, only to realize that none of them matter.
We will be judged on who we are and what we do, not who we hope to be and what we plan to do.
I know that too many times in my life my holy intentions have been undermined by fear and laziness and invalid excuses that justify my inaction.
We will be judged by what we believe and what we do with that belief. As Jesus says numerous times in the Bible, we will be judged by the fruit from our tree… not just from being a faithful tree, but from the fruit that we bring to the world.
I must overcome my own personal human failings. I must pursue a holy life so when I stand before God my actions will stand up to Jesus’ perfect Truth and He will welcome me to spend eternity in His presence.