YOU WILL GIVE ME YOUR TIME AND I WILL GIVE YOU ETERNITY
Fr. IRENEUSZ SKUBIŚ
At the interface of years our thoughts are hovering around the problem of time and passing. It is impossible not to touch the issue of God who is in the category of eternity. Basically every man as a contingent being somehow stops existing and nothing does not change in the universe because of that. But on the other hand we know that God bestows the man with eternity. Maybe we are not completely aware what this eternity is, this category is mostly studied by philosophers, physicists. But only a man, a thinking human being can refer to this kind of the notion in a conscious way.
So, we exist in a defined time, human actions are done in a specific time, in some time a man is thinking whether he is a fulfilled, happy human being or he wasted his life. We are also thinking about it when we see people till the last time before their eternal rest who were still among the alive ones not long time ago. But the other side – life after death is a great unknown to us. So, we are asking about this time which will come, we are reflecting on God’s promises concerning the future time, we are looking at God’s commandments which say about a good way of fulfilling our life. This all should have their reflections, which makes our life become deeper and fuller.
What does ‘fulfilled life’ mean? I was analyzing this problem on last day of the year 2012. While watching various pictures on TV, presenting thousands of people dancing and cheering many of whom clearly under the influence of alcohol, I was wondering whether they all so much stuck in their today, are able to ask ourselves a question about their fulfilled life, about their future, about their eternity.
Mass media care about a situation when a man would not think about his fulfillment, but they often help to maintain the state of thoughtlessness. But we must be aware that beside people having crazy fun on New Year’s Eve there were people – also whole groups of people – who devoted themselves to profound reflections over their life and passing of its early phase. Those people – not only elderly people, are also groups of young people – were kneeling in front of the Bethlehem crib and were doing a kind of an examination of conscience, feeling the importance of eternity.
And it seems that it is about it in life. The man will be fulfilled if he includes eternity in his earthly life which is waiting for him. It was remembered so by young Karol Wojtyła with the inscription of the parish church in Wadowice: ‘Time is running, eternity is waiting’. It is a significant statement which strongly sounds at the night ending the old year.
On the New Year’s Eve we also feel the emptiness after people who passed away. What does the journey of these souls look like? This pilgrimage which starts just after the end of this life? Are there any divine ‘offices’ verifying all these people? What will happen to us?... Now in Poland we are experiencing the death of the great archbishop IgnacyTokarczuk. How does he see God now? Has he met with him yet? What does His revelation with God look like? In the same way as the Apostles were experiencing it on the Tabor mount, seeing Christ in the light? However the man is very limited in his human way of thinking and imagination.
So New Year’s Eve is not only a craziness or fun. It is a good time to think over one’s own eternity, reflection important for everybody. And if we also add the world of million people who are ill, suffering, crying from pain and very difficult understanding of the sense of suffering – our reflection will have another kind of burden, so much rooted just in eternity, and saying in a religious language – it is aiming at the act of redemption. Such reflection should be undertaken constantly because every man would like to be redeemed from evil, everyone wants redemption. The man who is experiencing inner dilemmas, uncertainty of his fate, wants to have a reference to the Great Certainty. Undoubtedly, it is the very God who is our light and fulfillment. He comes with his merciful love and makes peace in our soul. He, the Prince of Peace, came to redeem the world. To redeem you and me. Therefore in the new year 2013, we are calling to Him: ‘Jesus, we trust You!’