So I hopped on Facebook today and found a fierce discussion going on about Heaven, Hell, Purgatory and Freewill. The best way I can explain the reality of Hell is God’s final act of love to the soul blocking/unfriending Him. Anyone who does not want a relationship, shall not have it imposed upon them (hell is the rejection of God’s offer of friendship). God loves them beyond their rejection, and so they continue to be.
(STILL HAVING TROUBLE WITH PICTURES SO IMAGINE A VALENTINE HERE WITH THE PHRASE , “WILL YOU BE MINE?” INSIDE OF A HEART).
How do we wind up where we wind up? The faith does not focus on who is there, but why and how one winds up not in Heaven –it is always an offering of God to us, to be in friendship, during this lifetime of ours. It is ours to choose. Only those who would rejoice in Christ’s presence always find themselves there, thus purgatory is where we learn bit by bit, how our errors, our sins, our omissions and commissions wounded the Body of Christ. We discover and it is painful to examine, all the ways we did not love God with our whole hearts and our neighbors as ourselves. Until we can do this fully with our whole souls, we cannot enter Heaven. It is not a question of merit. It is a question of bearableness, and of willingness to say “Yes” to God’s invitation of total love. We who are attached to sin, will struggle to say yes, or to seek to enter. We who are attached to sin more than God, will refuse.
Some find it comforting to believe, All dogs go to heaven, –that sin has no consequence, and because God is merciful, all sins will be ignored. Mercy is not the ignoring of sin, but the forgiveness of sin. This is what Christ teaches. Forgiveness must be sought by those who gave offense. It’s not that God uses a bouncer, it’s that we won’t seek to come in.
PICTURE IN YOUR MIND A CARTOON OF PERSON TRYING TO USE A FAKE I.D. AT THE PEARLY GATES WITH THE CAPTION, “It’s okay. I know the manager.” when what we need to say is, “Is it okay? I’d like to see the manger.”
On finding one’s self on the naughty list… VISUALIZE MERIT BADGES ON A VEST.
We need to want the friendship, but the good news is, God always knocks, God always offers. Our freewill is our response to His invitation.
IMAGINE A PICTURE OF A CHURCH DOOR SLIGHTLY AJAR.