Forever More

"Give up your sins so that something worse may not overtake you." -John 5:14

Being sick for thirty-eight years is certainly a terrible suffering. To stay sick for most of one's life is a tragedy. However, after healing this man, Jesus told him: "Remember, now, you have been cured. Give up your sins so that something worse may not overtake you" (Jn 5:14). What could be worse than being sick for thirty-eight years? Being separated from the Lord, refusing to accept His love, and being in hell forever would be worse.

We must never become so burdened with the bad as to forget the worst. Likewise, we should not become so preoccupied with the good as to forget the best. For instance, when the apostles were rejoicing in their victory over demons, Jesus told them: "Do not rejoice so much in the fact that the devils are subject to you as that your names are inscribed in heaven" (Lk 10:20). Likewise, Paul proclaimed: "I consider the sufferings of the present to be as nothing compared with the glory to be revealed in us" (Rm 8:18).

Although we maximize rather than minimize the significance of our present sufferings and blessings, we are to be "intent on things above rather than on things of earth" (Col 3:2). Our present is overshadowed by Christ's future and final coming. Our earthly life is a stepping stone into eternal happiness. Our time will give way to the timeless, the eternal. "God has put the timeless into [our] hearts" (Eccl 3:12), so think often of eternity. There is more - much more. We haven't seen the worst or the best. There is life after death, heaven and hell, and eternity.

 Father, may this Lent be a time when I see everything in the right perspective.

 "Every month they shall bear fresh fruit, for they shall be watered by the flow from the sanctuary." -Ez 47:12

Our Lady of Medjugorje Speaks Of SUFFERING

When sufferings come, offer them up as a sacrifice to God. (03/29/1984)
By means of the cross God is glorified through every person. (11/29/1984)
Dear children, during these days my Lord is allowing me to intercede for more graces for you... With these graces, dear children, I want your sufferings to be joy. (06/19/1986)
I desire also that your cross be a joy for you. Especially, dear children, pray that you may be able to accept sickness, and sufferings with love - the way Jesus accepted them [sufferings]. Only in that way will I be able, with joy, to give to you the graces and healings which Jesus permits me. (09/11/1986)
Today I invite you to offer your crosses and sufferings for my intentions... Little children, offer your sufferings as a gift to God so that they may become a most beautiful flower of joy. Therefore, little children, pray that you may understand that suffering can become joy, and the cross a way of joy. (09/25/1996)
When you are tired and sick and you do not know the meaning of your life, take the rosary and pray; pray until prayer becomes for you a joyful meeting with your Saviour. I am with you, little children, and I intercede and pray for you. (04/25/2001)
Courage, little children!... Through each of your tribulations and sufferings, God will find the way of joy for you. Therefore, little children, pray. We are close to you with our love. (03/25/2006)
Let your suffering be united in his [Jesus'] suffering and love will win. (03/25/2013)

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