- Fr. Leo
Solemnity of Jesus Christ, King of the Universe
Are we good people or bad people? Many of us would easily identify with our good side. Perhaps from time to time, we are impatient, selfish or liars; right? But basically, we are honest, decent, hard-working people who would not want to do something criminally or morally wrong. We are faithful to our families and to the commitments that really matter. Those of us who are slower to defend our good side may suffer from being scrupulous, with a tendency to find fault with ourselves by blaming ourselves for everything without objectivity. The bottom line is that most of us in our hearts believe that we are fundamentally on the side of the sheep and not the goats in the final analysis known as Judgment Day.
To what extent do we come to this conclusion? Perhaps we compare ourselves with our neighbors by saying, "I would never treat my children like that; or my dog, or my lawn. I would never use that kind of language, nor would I show so much anger, nor would I be so irresponsible with money or my job". These kinds of comparisons can make us feel righteous, but this tells us very little about how we might seen before God.
Some of us may also be using the criteria of the Ten Commandments or the laws of the church or even civil laws, to evaluate our personal virtue. If we have complied with these obligations and have refrained from breaking these prohibitions... But, will this be enough to enter the heavenly gate? If heaven was a game to win, maybe. But Jesus broadened the criteria for his followers when he gave us the Commandment of Love, which is a higher and more binding principle than the minimum observance of moral laws. When we have followed each letter of the rules, we have only laid the foundation for a lifestyle of love.
However, If we want the mercy of God, we have to become the mercy of God. It's a very simple formula, and now is the right time to put it into practice.