An Offering Fit for The King
Strive always to confess your sins with a deep knowledge of your own wretchedness and with clarity and purity. -St. John of the Cross
If a king were to come and visit you, would you shrug off the opportunity to make your home the very best it could be for Him? If your home was infested with insects or rodents, would you still invite Him in? If it was flooded, would you still invite Him to take his shoes off and take a seat? If your home was cold and dark, would you just hand him a flashlight and tell him to watch his step? You know you could be lazy, or simply assure yourself that if he cared for you, he will accept your home as a disaster. What if you had the ability to repair everything; every infestation and mess in your home could be eradicated and all the power brought back? Would you not jump at the opportunity to welcome the King into a home worth presenting?
As Catholics, we believe that the Blessed Sacrament is truly Christ physically present. When we receive Him into our body and subsequently into our hearts, are we aware of what kind of condition our soul is in? I have been pondering lately on how to show proper reverence to Christ in the Blessed Sacrament. One thing I have been reminded of is that to receive our Blessed Lord in a state of mortal sin, we not only dishonour Him, but we desecrate the Sacrament itself. We commit again another mortal sin.
“Lord, I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed.”
Receiving Christ in a state of mortal sin is a grave matter. Paul states in his letter to the Corinthians:
“For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until He comes. Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner, shall be guilty of the body and the blood of the Lord. But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of the bread and drink of the cup. For he who eats and drinks, eats and drinks judgment to himself, if he does not judge the body rightly.” (1 Cor 11: 26-29)
To receive Holy Communion in a state of mortal sin means that, apart from the judgment of Christ and the Church, we deem ourselves worthy to consume God Himself, even though as St. John Vianney says, “we receive Him only to sacrifice Him on an altar to Satan”. How can we dare to approach Him in such an unworthy manner? We must wait to receive Him with a clean heart rather than to receive Him knowing that, due to our sin, we are now in enmity with God. It is like betraying our spouse, and not repenting for the harm we have done to them. But God does not leave us abandoned and provided us with the Sacrament of Confession. True contrition and confession is needed to cleanse us of mortal sin.
In pursuing a holy life, we must strive to do all we can to love Christ above all. This includes ensuring that we do not receive Him in a state of mortal sin. If you are in a state of mortal sin, have not received a confession in a while, or want to make your Advent awesome, find out when your parish offers the Sacrament of Confession this week. If you can’t make it to that time, then call your priest and schedule a time. There is no need to fear asking for confession. To help properly prepare for confession, do a daily examination of your conscience to help keep your soul in check. Do not lie to yourself. If you are guilty of sin, own up to it. As Saint Josemaria Escriva would say, “At the time of your examination(of sins) beware of the devil that ties your tongue.”
A humble confession displeases Satan and, if he could, he would make you omit Holy Communion. – Thomas A. Kempis
For some of us, confession is not easy. Apologizing to someone is hard, and it is even harder to apologize to someone we love after we have hurt them. We must not forget that God’s mercy is infinite, and when we come to Him with a truly repentant heart in the Sacrament of Confession and promise to sin no more, we will come to love God more. Saint Thomas Aquinas said, “In the life of the body a man is sometimes sick, and unless he takes medicine, he will die. Even so in the spiritual life a man is sick on account of sin. For that reason he needs medicine so that he may be restored to health; and this grace is bestowed in the Sacrament of Penance.” Confession makes it possible for us to properly participate at Mass with clean and joyful hearts.
When Christ came into the world, He wasn’t given the best living conditions; A manger in a stable, filled with animals. It was probably chilly in the night time, and I’m sure Mary and Joseph didn’t find it too comfortable either. That was the birth of our Lord! The Three Wise Men fell to their knees, presenting him with gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. The question is, what gift will we offer our Savior King this Christmas? Let us take time this Advent to work on growing in virtue, in order to offer Christ the King a clean heart for Him to be welcomed into. Let our hearts be not a dirty stable, but a place we have properly prepared for a King.
Check out these other posts for more information on confession
Posted on December 2, 2013, in Catechism, Catholic, Confession, Devotion, eucharist, Eucharistic Spirituality, faith, fear, Friendship, Heaven, Love, morality, Saints, Tradition, True Devotion to Mary, Trust, Virtue and tagged Advent, Christmas, confession, king, love, offering, saint, sin. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.