Well done, good friend.
God sits in Heaven and brings everything to goodness, truth, and beauty. To do so in a cosmos with free will beings, where consent is necessary for love, and almost endless combinations of interconnected objects are possible, is hard for us to discern.
Recently, someone I know was rewarded for making a series of choices that were right, hard, but good. This most beautiful soul had to make some choices against seeming interest to do what was right. Duty was done. Depression, a monster I know too well, endured. Errors were avoided and conscience left unstained. All this done as a Christian knowing this life, full of bad choices by other free will agents, might not bring the deserved reward for virtue.
Virtue has her reward.
Saint Paul says: “So also good deeds are conspicuous; and even when they are not, they cannot remain hidden.”
Yet this is not quite true, because the virtue will live forever and keep bringing a good harvest. The first joy will be a seed for hundreds more. We see this now, often, and in eternity always. There is more to come for every good deed.
The Narnia books are criticized for what happens in the last book to Susan. She has chosen the superficial over the beautiful. Who knows what she would have chosen if the books had continued? Susan chose badly and missed something awesome. What if Susan had chosen differently? What if she had heard the spirit of her age, always changing, never enduring, and chosen the eternity that was in her heart?
The party, the feast, would have come quickly. The joy would have come in the world to come surely, but also in this life if at all possible. If the Good Father could bless, He would. To live for the trivial, whatever we are supposed to buy and consume just now, is to miss goodness then, but also now. Bad seed, thank God, can be supplanted and God can bring the awful to an end. Mercy Lord! Good seed the eternal Father makes last through eternity, yet He is also eager to see the rewards begin as soon as possible.The good we do lives eternally, mercy kills the bad for which we repent.
Often in my own life, I have needed mercy and am thankful for that grace. There are others, my wife is one, who choose wisely almost all the time. They rarely get all they deserve in a broken world. Sometimes they do, however, get a foretaste of the crowns, jewels, mansions, delights that are to come. Just now I am reminded that doing the right thing sows good seed and this good will bring a good harvest for all eternity, but sometimes (Thank God!) this begins now.
My chum knows this now.
We will find joy in that eternal morning, but sometimes we find joy now. In that day, the rewards will not just be abstract. We will feast as embodied souls. Every pleasure will be purified and all find fulfillment by God’s good grace. Yet this is not just for then, since it was, before our sin, for now. Those who choose virtue find reward as soon as the good God can give it. Often that is in this life in the good days that come far more often than we deserve.
Thank God we do not reap all the bad seed we sow. Thank God, today, I am reminded that the good God will not let one good seed fall to the earth and fail to bear fruit.
All good deeds will be rewarded in that Jollification to come, but God delights to start the party early. And to my friend, well done, my chum.