Mr Joseph Vempeny
Posted on : 28/01/2008 05:55:23
RECIPE FOR MAKING HEAVEN ON EARTH
Heaven is being with God, being in a state of happiness, joy and peace, whether it is here or hereafter. We can make heaven here and now and that will ensure heaven in eternal life as well as. All you do is to mix together ample proportions of the following and use it as your main course, your staple food.
1. Contentment: Heaven will be yours here if you stay poor in spirit (Mt. 5: 3). Be satisfied with what you have. If you are poor realize that what you possess, even if it is just some rags to cover your nakedness, is all that you need and enjoy the luxury of the beauty of the sun, of rain, of hills and meadows. If you are rich, consider all the wealth of your estate, whether a small fortune or a huge one, as belonging to God and to be used for the good of others. Consider yourself a trustee, managing the estate on behalf of Him. Whether rich or poor, greed shall cut you off from the heaven made by being poor in spirit. You can make money to live but do not live to make money. When you live to make money you serve mammon or Satan. (Mt. 6: 24). You live to serve God. You serve God when you serve others. (Mt. 25: 40)
2. Non attachment: You are in heaven when your spirit is free to soar high and enjoy the beauty of the world below. The bonds of attachment that tie you down to worldly things are obstacles that prevent you from enjoying this heaven. Even if you are cheated out of your inheritance or if someone has stolen your beautiful new car you shall be able to stay cool inside if you are not attached to them, if you recognize that they were not exclusively yours. After all you did not bring them with you when you came into the world. These material possessions must not be your treasures. Your treasures, what you value in life, must be spiritual. In other words, “Store up treasures in heaven”. (Mt.6: 19 - 21)
3. Live in Love: When you live in love, you live in God and God lives in you.
(1 Jn. 4: 16) If this is not heaven what is heaven? Living in love means that you must be immersed in or surrounded by it at all times and places. It must be your way of life. And to make heaven on earth this love must be pure and selfless. Even within our nuclear families the love between spouses, siblings, parents and children, all can be and often is tainted by selfishness. Selfishness and possessiveness can turn your life into hell instead of heaven. Love begins at home but should not end there. The same selfless love, without expectations of return or rewards, must extend to relations, colleagues, neighbors, everyone that you come across. The people around you may not always be lovable. But you must still love them even if you dislike or disapprove of what they do or the way they behave. Some one may hurt you. Still you have to forgive them and pray for them. They will change. Living in universal love means that you should not even be indifferent to some one. Indifference, even as hatred, is the opposite of love.
4. Live with Jesus: Whether you are aware of it or not Jesus is with us all the time, till the end of the earth, as he promised us. The problem is that we often fail to recognize the risen Christ even as his own two disciples on their way to Emmaus (Lk. 24: 13 - 31) or the seven disciple fishing (Jn. 21: 4 - 12). We recognize the other person as Jesus only when we offer hospitality and share the food with the person or when we are aware of something unusual - a miracle. We must see Jesus in all the people we come across in our every day life. Because Jesus had said that whatever comfort we offer to the hungry and the thirsty, the poor and the needy, we are offering to him. (Mt. 25: 30 - 46) And all the people we meet, rich and poor alike, are in need of something, hungry for your understanding, care, love, advice. You can at least offer them an ear to pour their woes in, a shoulder for them to lean on or cry, a heart to love, a word of understanding, consolation, advice.
5. Live for God: Whatever you do, you do it for the greater glory of God. In all your actions the intentions should be pure, strictly following the dictates of your conscience. Do not take credit for your achievements nor blame yourself for failures. Submit to His will in everything and live for Him with Him and in Him and you shall experience heaven here on earth and the result will be heaven hereafter.
6. . Be a child: To enjoy heaven you must change and be humble like a child. (Mt. 18: 2-4). We do not consider ourselves sons or daughters of God but children of God; not independent and mature adults but toddlers fully dependant on our Father in Heaven. Hold on to His hands firmly. Then you will have none of the worries, anxieties or fears that is the cause much of the misery of the modern humans. Jesus had warned us against the futility of anxiety. (Mt. 6: 25-34).
7. Be Positive: Look for the bright side of everything, the silver lining of the clouds. See only the good in the people around you, not the bad part. Every one has good and bad aspects - no one is perfect or totally evil-. Have a smile, a word of encouragement and of support for the people in your life.
When the imminence of the kingdom of heaven was announced by John the Baptist (Mt.3: 2) and Jesus (Mt.4: 17) weren’t they asking us to be ready to make heaven on earth by changing our attitudes to life and starting a new life according to the unique teachings of Jesus. If we try sincerely we can make heaven here for us and for those around us.
It is good to remember that no one can eradicate the evil in the whole wide world. But you can and must try to remove the evil from your life and from your environs. You cannot make heaven for yourself only. You make heaven for others and you shall live in that heaven. Make hell for others and you shall be in that hell. Try to make others happy and you shall be happy.