TOMORROW MAY NEVER COME.
Sermon after the Sunday Liturgy 7.11.2021
Time is getting on, feel it. It doesn’t depend on the short period left for us. On the whole, in relation to eternity there will always be little time, as time can not be stopped, it is getting less day by day. No matter how long we have left to live, we will be critically short of time, because we don’t have the sense of time and that is why we can’t come to realize what time is. If we did not just feel time, but lived keeping in mind the every-second loss of time, we would have been constantly saying: “no time, no time”. We are always leaving something till tomorrow, till the day after tomorrow, because we don’t have the sense of time. Essentially, this space of time is our prison. One day we will get out of it to the timeless space, to the place of eternity where God is. But as long as we are still under the rule of time, we will be in this prison. It pressures us every moment before crushing us in the end. All of us should go through this state. It’s another matter that someone lives a mad life, but still remains in the general stream of time. While spiritual people live with the sense of time. And, in the end we will all be crushed by this time.
You see, Our Holy Theotokos, more honorable than the cherubim, and beyond compare more glorious than the seraphim, lived inside the time too. She was joyful with the birth of Her Divine Son, she was happy to see Him grow up, grow to maturity. But She always lived in the Spirit, otherwise She won’t be able to give birth to God. For the Spirit everything is possible, He enlightens the mind by Divine Revelation, that is why She knew from the beginning Whom and why She gave birth to, what was going to be in the time to come. And so, She kept going to that critical terminal point where time clenched Her heart, there on Golgotha.
It is not enough to read about the Saint Spirit. We, Christians, should be in the Spirit, our mind should be enlightened with Him. We should always keep in mind that time will crush us in the end. This sense of time, the feeling of constant time shortening should make us sober, we should define priorities. All things pass, all things go to pieces, and the main thing comes. Every one of us should go through this terminal point of oppression as Our Lord Himself passed through it and gave us the example. Meanwhile, we keep on living like immortals.
In today’s Gospel the rich man lived like an immortal. And it is not the point whether being rich is a sin or not. Some poor people sin more due to being poor because of their idleness. One shouldn’t judge in these terms. The main issue is not the richness of that man, it is the fact that he made his richness the only purpose of his life, and forgot about the main thing. Some time ago, the money slipped through his fingers and he found himself poorer than Lazarus.
These days we often hear about death. And sometimes I want to scream: people, wake up, call to your minds that you are not immortal, reevaluate your lives. Run to church, go there more frequently, not more rarely for fear of contracting an illness. Confess, take Communion every week. By the facts of life Our Lord reminds us that tomorrow may never come. I often compare people without the sense of time to those who come to a minefield. They spread a fancy white cloth, put their hampers on it, and take out cheeses, sandwiches. While bombs explode next to them and parts of human bodies, blood and dirt shatter all the way around them. Meanwhile, they wipe themselves and go on in their insanity:”Let us put the fruit in this vase. Did we take forks?” A mad picture.
Sometimes I hear the news – during the ten years of the war in Afghanistan we lost less people than we lose now per week. Blood flows like water, death all around us, and we behave like madmen, we are occupied with anything, but the issues of eternity. Think, tomorrow will never happen for somebody. For a non-believer the sense of time is a burden, people don’t want to hear about it, as if in that way they will stop to be under the rule of time. At the same time, for those who believe, it is sanity of mind and thus, sanity of life, which will not stop at the terminal point of strain and death. And beyond that point opens the space of eternity, fulfilled with the Spirit, Who brings joy and optimism. Life without God is hard, it can break you down. Go to God. Run to church more often, observe the praying rule at home, don’t put it off till another day.