Browsing Pastor's Corner

Home Security Soul Security

Dec 3, 2018

The days are coming, says the LORD, when I will fulfill the promise I made to the house of Israel and Judah... In those days Judah shall be safe and Jerusalem shall dwell secure.

One of the primary concerns of a home owner is keeping one’s home safe...not so much the structure but the ones living there...one’s family especially the kids. Who of us do not remember that horrific Petit home invasion in Chesire in 2007 where a mother and her two daughters were killed? These awful reminders of our vulnerability and exposure to such dangers is quite unnerving and can be psychologically scarring to say the least.

That is why there are any number of security systems out there that help ensure as much as possible our homes and loved ones stay reasonably safe and protected. For example, Life Shield...not only does it protect against break-ins but also monitors for fire and carbon monoxide levels. 

In more extreme cases, some home-owners, in that similar bomb shelter spirit of preparation and fear of the 1960’s, have what are called panic rooms: A fortified room that is installed in a private residence or business to provide a safe shelter, or hiding place in the event of a break in, home invasion, tornado, terror attack, or other threat.

One of the more outstanding safety features of home-security systems is when one tries a break-in, all sorts of lights and deafening sounds go off, alerting the intruder that not only has he been detected, but police are on the way.

And yet, I cannot imagine a more terrifying scenario than what Jesus proposes in today’s Gospel…the imminent end of the world and thus His glorious and terrifying Second Coming.

Now, He does not do this just to frighten us, any more than when purchasing a home, one looks into security systems not because they are living in fear, rather because it is the sensible thing to do…make sure your family is protected and that you are properly prepared to deal with any threats that might harm.

More than any thief, storm or even terrorist attack…there are no greater threats to our well being than Satan and death…and how really prepared are we for either? Which is the entire point of the Advent season…that reminder that we should always be in get ready for Jesus mode…not only to encounter the infant in the Crib at Christmas, but the Judge of the living and the dead when at last we pass from this earth.

More than life-shield we need Christ Shield who says I am the way, the truth and the life. As Jesus will further elaborate on His second coming instructions:

Stay awake! For you do not know on which day your Lord will come. 43t Be sure of this: if the master of the house had known the hour of night when the thief was coming, he would have stayed awake and not let his house be broken into. 44So too, you also must be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.

Our greatest security system is our Faith…and there is no safer more insulated panic room than the Church…as Jesus says elsewhere concerning the threat that Satan poses in our lives and in the lives of those we love:

But if it is by the Spirit of God that I drive out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you. 29* How can anyone enter a strong man’s house and steal his property, unless he first ties up the strong man? Then he can plunder his house.  

To prevent such plunder and the presence of malignant spirits in one’s homes, how many people have their homes blessed? Despite the invitation to do so every year, so few people take advantage of this security measure to have that lingering holy presence of God’s peace and power abide in one’s home. 

The reality is, sin is like an infectious disease, if we do nothing to treat it, like an air-borne disease it lets loose contaminates in the air causing all sorts of harm to oneself and others. Again,  safety and health are two of our primary concerns in life...but nowhere are these conditions more relevant than in our spiritual lives.

Like an armory and hospital, the Church provides any number of weapons and any number of remedies and preventative health care aides that help to ensure that enduring safety and health despite how trying and difficult life may get...as we hear in that catalogue of signs that Jesus speaks about today.  

These will be so terrifying that people will die of fright in anticipation of what is coming upon not only the world but the reality of dying and death that is upon us all…as any number of wakes and funerals we attend remind us.

But who exactly are these terrified people? The point Jesus is most making is that those people should not be us…not those who believe in Him, who love Him who with all their hearts, mind, soul and strength…would a child be terrified to know that he is to spend an entire summer in Disney World…so as disciples of Christ does it make sense to fear the enduring joys, love and laughter of Heaven…which is why Jesus says to us…

But when these signs begin to happen, stand erect and raise your heads because your redemption is at hand.

In other words get psyched but to be psyched is to be prepared…as He further insists:

Beware that your hearts do not become drowsy from carousing and drunkenness and the anxieties of daily life, and that day catch you by surprise like a trap...

Be vigilant at all times and pray that you have the strength to escape the tribulations that are imminent and to stand before the Son of Man.

It’s like when those security lights go off when an intruder approaches scaring them away but at the same time enabling you to be at peace knowing those security measures are effectively in place. This is the time of year, where there is an almost blinding array of Christmas lights to excite our senses...but more than just decorations are what these beautiful lights are meant to represent. 

As Jesus says... “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.  And having this light, Jesus then says to us: You are the light of the world. A city set on a mountain cannot be hidden.j 15

Nor do they light a lamp and then put it under a bushel basket; it is set on a lampstand, where it gives light to all in the house.k 16Just so, your light must shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your heavenly Father.

And being this light when any demonic danger or threat approaches us and those we love, those lights we represent and the deafening sound of our prayers will send those spirits screaming back into the night and hell from which they emerged.

Scientifically speaking the end of the world is imminent but more imminent is the end of our own lives when the Son of Man will appear to us in great glory...and how prepared will we have been for this moment of all moments?

A relationship with Jesus Christ and His Church is our greatest security system which will inspire us to look forward to that day, and the gift of each day we have left in this world...with hope and confidence and a continued willingness to protect those we love with the swords and shields, lights and sounds of prayer, the sacraments and devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary.

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