Reflection – Our Earthly Pilgrimage

May 25, 2017 – “Dear children! The Most High has permitted me to call you anew to conversion. Little children, open your hearts to the grace to which you are all called. Be witnesses of peace and love in this peaceless world. Your life here on earth is passing. Pray that through prayer you may yearn for Heaven and the things of Heaven and your hearts will see everything differently. You are not alone; I am with you and intercede before my Son Jesus for you. Thank you for having responded to my call.”

It is a sobering reminder when Our Lady tell us that our life here is passing. We get so caught up in human and worldly things that we can sometimes forget that there is a life after this one. And all the things we thought mattered so much to us (material items, popularity, wealth) will not be worth a cinch when we get there.

That’s why often times I’m saddened when I see people with this “YOLO” (you only live 00654e44f02807871f7c24204cda05faonce) mentality. They take it as a justification for doing whatever they want, whenever they want, and however they want without any thought of the repercussions of all the things that can damage the soul, and even the souls of others.

Yes, life in this world is not eternal. We will one day leave it. But it is not the end.

You do not only live once and “game over.” You continue on into the next life. And it will be either in eternal salvation or eternal damnation.

Again, it is a really sobering reality that we have to face. Which is why Our Lady is calling us to direct our gaze Heavenward; to yearn for the things of Heaven. While we are still here living on earth, she calls us to get our priorities in order and start living the conversion life.

What is it that’s taking up the most residence in our hearts?

Is it our selfish, disordered desires; material things, money and ego?

Or is it God, love, humility, and a desire to strive for holiness and a better life?

None of us are perfect. Not even were the saints. But are we making those real attempts to seek Heaven in our lives, and do good? Is there any sacrifice on our part?

That’s what matters the most: the attempt. And not giving up, even if you don’t get it right sometimes. God sees and knows. And He supplies for all that we lack with His mercy.

“Pray that through prayer you may yearn for Heaven and the things of Heaven and your hearts will see everything differently.”

When we start fixing our sights on God, everything changes in life. We start to see things so differently, and what we thought we so dearly needed turns out to be worth peanuts. This is so true, as Our Lady mentions, because I’ve experienced this in my life and maybe so have you. When you make a real attempt to start living a life united with God through prayer and obedience to His will, everything becomes so clear and vivid.

Our Blessed Lord has told us:

“Do not store up treasures for yourselves on earth, where moth and woodworm destroy them and thieves can break in and steal. But store up treasures for yourselves in heaven, where neither moth nor woodworm destroys them and thieves cannot break in and steal. For whatever your treasure is, there will your heart be too.” [Matthew 6:19-21]

We should be storing up graces and virtues in our hearts; holy desires, prayer, love and charity. Good works, growing in faith. We should do our best to live our lives in a way that is pleasing to the Lord, and this is exactly what Our Lady has been teaching us to do all these years in Medjugorje.

Medjugorje visionary Mirjana Soldo writes in her book:

Our true home is with God. We are like pilgrims on Earth, here for a brief sojourn on our way to an eternal reality that transcends time, space, and death. Your pilgrimage might end today, tomorrow, or in twenty years, but you are going to meet God, whether you’re aware of that or not. Was your walk guided by humility and sacrifice, or arrogance and greed? It’s better to contemplate this question now instead of at the end of your journey.

[…] Through prayer and fasting, she says, we can be her “river of love” flowing out into the world, and she urges us to comprehend that we don’t have to be perfect to work for Heaven, saying, “Do not waste time thinking about whether you are worthy to be my apostles.” 

Do you understand that she’s talking to you? Whatever you do during your short “blink” on Earth will affect you for all eternity. If you had to spend a relatively short amount of time doing something difficult in order to guarantee yourself everlasting joy, wouldn’t you do it?

But Our Lady wants us to strive for more than that. She calls us to join the fight here on Earth by helping our brothers and sisters come to know God’s love. Evil yearns to deprive us of our eternal reward by luring us with temptations and then destroying us from within. More darkness on the planet equals more souls lost forever.

(Mirjana Soldo, My Heart Will Triumph, p. 319, 368-369)

And this brings us back to the beginning of her last message:

“The Most High has permitted me to call you anew to conversion. Little children, open your hearts to the grace to which you are all called. Be witnesses of peace and love in this peaceless world.”

We are called to live our daily conversion with both love and faith. We are called to open our hearts to the immense graces the Lord is giving us, to be His children. We are called to be witnesses of peace and love in a world that is severely lacking in both departments. Fulton Sheen quote02

Don’t ever think that your example and behavior goes unseen. As they say, actions speak louder than words. You don’t have to preach the faith, but you must live it. People can be more perceptive than you think, even in this social media-driven, narcissistic culture we are living in.

When we fail to live as Christians, don’t be fooled, there is a ripple-effect. It sends a message to others. Just look at the current crisis in the Church as an example. Disobedience and selfishness has great consequences reserved not just for the one who committed the error; children, families, non-believers and believers, and those who perhaps do not yet know better all can fall into the same errors. And before you know it, it spreads like a plague, and we’re stuck in a crisis of great proportions.

That’s why Our Lady continues to call us. Her and her Son Jesus want us to fight back against the errors of the world with love, obedience, faith, prayer, and self-sacrifice.

And as we spend the next few days preparing for Pentecost, just as the apostles and Our Lady waited in the Upper Room, we pray that our Holy Mother and her spouse the Holy Spirit, will continue to guide us in our daily conversion by obtaining for us the gifts and graces we need to go on. And to help us to persevere in goodness, and preserve us from every evil as we continue our pilgrimage here on earth toward Heaven.