I just had a thought about relationships looking like a series of concentric circles. The outer circle consists of our relationship to most other people in the world, the inner circle is with our family and friends and the innermost circle is our relationship with God. I thought also that the innermost circle should be strongest because the strength of the other outer circles depend upon it. Once the inner circles collapse, the outer ones would certainly follow.
We must learn to love even those who seem evil if we are to see God’s face. Because God’s face is a face of Mercy and of Love. A Love that forgives, that waits, that desires for what is good and not for what is evil.
It is not for us to hate. Neither is it for us to judge, for only God can judge. But we were commanded to love, to love as Jesus Himself has loved us.
Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying,
“‘You shall not hate your brother in your heart. You shall surely rebuke your neighbor, and not bear sin because of him.
“‘You shall not take vengeance, nor bear any grudge against the children of your people; but you shall love your neighbor as yourself. I am Yahweh.
– Leviticus 19:1, 17-18 (WEB)
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, just like I have loved you; that you also love one another. – John 13:34 (WEB) Continue reading
Prayer is an act of love, words are not needed. Even if sickness distracts from thoughts, all that is needed is the WILL to love. – St. Teresa of Avila
Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, Lumen gentium 16:
Those who have not yet received the Gospel are related in various ways to the people of God. In the first place we must recall the people to whom the testament and the promises were given and from whom Christ was born according to the flesh.(Rm 9,4-5). “On account of their fathers” this people remains most dear to God, for “God does not repent of the gifts he makes nor of the calls he issues” (Rm 11,28-29). But the plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the Creator. In the first place amongst these there are the Muslims, who, professing to hold the faith of Abraham, along with us adore the one and merciful God, who on the last day will judge mankind.
Nor is God far distant from those who in shadows and images seek the unknown God, for it is he who gives to all men life and breath and all things, (Acts 17, 25-28) and as Savior wills that all men be saved (1Tim 2,4). Those also can attain to salvation who through no fault of their own do not know the Gospel of Christ or his Church, yet sincerely seek God and moved by grace strive by their deeds to do his will as it is known to them through the dictates of conscience. Nor does Divine Providence deny the helps necessary for salvation to those who, without blame on their part, have not yet arrived at an explicit knowledge of God and with his grace strive to live a good life. Whatever good or truth is found amongst them is looked upon by the Church as a preparation for the Gospel. She knows that it is given by him who enlightens all men so that they may finally have life. Continue reading
Some people are angry at God and can’t believe He is good because they believe He sends people to hell. But hell is self-chosen. God does not wish anyone to be condemned, but neither can He force Himself on anyone who does not want to see His face and be with Him forever. This is what true love is. Love is not manipulation. It can never be given or received by force. This is how much God respects us and loves us.
Some may reply that even if there are people who do not want to be with God, if God’s love is unconditional, He could have provided them with a better place to live in and not have them live in a place where they shall be punished forever. But here we go back to man’s freewill. He can either choose God or choose to be away from Him. God is Light. God is everything that is good, pleasing, holy and perfect. God is beauty and God is joy and peace! To choose to be away from Him is to choose just the opposite of that. It is to choose darkness and every evil and imperfect thing. It is to choose hell itself.
“Jerusalem, Jerusalem, who kills the prophets, and stones those who are sent to her! How often I would have gathered your children together, even as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you would not!” – Matthew 23:37, (WEBBE) Continue reading