And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people,
Saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him; for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.
Waiting for the end of the world? Waiting for some calamity to strike – a meteor, nuclear war, Facebook filing Chapter 11? People hold up signs saying “The End Is Near” and expect Doomsday to meet them around the corner. But, the world doesn’t have to end, the earth explode, for the hour of the Lord to come. That hour is right now. And now. And now. And – yup, here it is again. Because time and space belong to the eternal and infinite Source – to “the ultimate reality that everyone calls God.” This is His house. He’s already here.
If we wait for man-made apocalypse or the natural expiration of our solar system – or even if we wait until we are on our deathbeds because of terminal illness or old age – until we think about eternity, ultimate reality, the human soul, and what lies beyond this life, then we aren’t fully living. We are not fully human, fully alive, unless we look beyond ourselves – not only beyond our own personal needs in the giving of love and charity, but also beyond our own skins, beyond our own eyeballs. We did not create ourselves. We did not bring ourselves into being. There is an Uncreated Creator, an Uncaused Cause. As the poet Rumi says,
“I didn’t come here of my own accord, and I can’t leave that way.
Whoever brought me here, will have to take me home.”
And earlier in the poem, My Soul Is from Elsewhere, as translated by Coleman Banks, Rumi speaks the timeless human question:
“Who looks out with my eyes? What is the soul?
I cannot stop asking.”
Neither can I stop asking and never should I cease to plunge myself into the Mystery of Being. The Unmoved Mover stirs my heart with restlessness until it rests in the heart of the Beloved One, Infinite/Eternal Love.
And angels fly in the midst of heaven, beyond the seeing of my corporal eyes, with the message from the foundation of Creation – What is, is. Do not be blind. Too willing to shut off any detection of the spiritual, lest we know that the end is here. The end that is the beginning – not like the pointless going around of a circle, or a nifty Jedi/Zen trick of the mind. What truly is, is, always was and always will be. Eternity isn’t something after. Eternity is here and now. And, to the One Who is the Source of All Being, the key moment is eternally now. The moment of import, the moment that impacts my immortal soul, is now. It was never waiting for me at the end of my days or at the End of Days. My home, my true self, my eternity, was always where it should be, though I may not possess the eyes to see.
The glory of life is that it is given. To thank and celebrate with the Giver is to revel in the gift. “The glory of God is Man fully alive”– let’s not wait until our beautiful bodies splash back into the pool. As we are sent forth, let us leap up in joy and praising, giving glory to the Hour of the Lord as God glories in our eyes wide open, our souls full throttle, the message of the angels received… and the love given given in return. Home. Now and always.
- Ho Hum on Heaven? Not only have many lost a proper fear of Hell, but also a deep longing for Heaven. (adw.org)