I realize that I may have a bias in looking at the good works of a deacon, but it fills me with hope to do so. After all, if a deacon can become a saint it must be open to anyone right? Seriously, we are all called to holiness regardless of our vocational calling. Married, single, clergy, religious, or laity--we are all called to be saints. Do we have the discipline in our lives to respond faithfully to God's call? Are we fully cooperating with God's grace and the power of the Holy Spirit?
It is well past time for each of us to take this calling seriously. It matters how we live. The Ten Commandments guide us in living faithfully to God's will. We can attempt to rationalize and justify sinfulness in our lives, but there is no hiding the truth from God. We will be held accountable for our actions. If we water down the Gospel message to accommodate our own sinful choices, we do so at our own peril.
Society does not want to face up to the reality of sin. Sex sells and the market is huge. However, the moral depravity brings devastating consequences into the lives of individuals and into society as a whole. We all suffer when sin pervades. Denying the existence of sin, or denying the existence of hell, doesn't make it any less real. The detrimental effects of rampant sin will impact us now as well as in the hereafter. We need to seek God's mercy now.
Before we become smug and self-righteous in comparing ourselves to others, let us take a moment to compare ourselves to the glory of God. How are we doing in our walk with the Lord? Are we removing the beam from our own eye before looking for the speck in our brother's eye? Are we sincerely seeking holiness and purity of heart? How complacent are we with living mediocre lives of holiness?
Take a slow, meditative walk through the Ten Commandments. Allow God to speak to you through reflection upon each one. How well are you doing in loving God with your whole heart, mind, soul, and strength? How well are you doing at loving your neighbor as yourself?
Saint Ephrem, pray for us!