Live for the next life

Friends in the Lord, St. Augustine once said, ‘Ask the kings and emperors and the rich and the learned, who have now passed into eternity – ask them what they now possess of their titles, their wealth, and their awards. They will all answer: ‘Nothing.’
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At a person’s death, we often speak of the great things a person acquired in life, but we should rather observe what he takes with him. When Pope Leo XI was dying, he said, ‘Oh, how much better it would have been for me to be a porter than a Pope.’
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Jesus says today to the Pharisees: ‘You belong to this world, that is why I told you, that you will die in your sins.’ We do not wish to die in our sins. Rather, we wish to work hard for the things that we can bring to the next world. Things of this world are here for us to use; they are not to become the objects of our happiness, because they come to an end.
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The famous Cornelius Lapide said, ‘The world is a stage, and we are actors.’ On this stage, one person plays the part of a CEO, another is a secretary, another is a senator or a teacher; in the drama of life – we each have a role. But when the show is over, the senator is no longer a senator, and the executive is no longer an executive – The scene has come to a close.
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Casimir, the king of Poland, at a party, raised up his cup in a toast and died while drinking it. The scene ended for him. 7 days after his election, Emperor Celsus was killed. The scene ended for him. King Ladislaus, while preparing to get married, died at age 18, the scene was over for him.
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Our life is a drama before God. It is our one chance to play our part, to act our role so as to glorify God. Lent has been a time for us to remind ourselves what is really worth living for. At the end of the play, we do not wish to be like that fool in the gospel who wanted to build more barns to store up his wealth: ‘You fool, don’t you know, your very life will be required of you tonight!’
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Jesus said to the Pharisees: ‘You belong to what is below, I belong to what is above.’ We too, must belong to what is above. As St. Teresa says, true life consists in living in such a way, that we will have nothing to fear at death. So let’s work for those things which will accompany us to the new world ahead, and which will make us happy for all eternity.

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