Seek what is above

Today is Easter Sunday, and the Second Reading from today’s Mass reminds us as to where our attention and thoughts should be:

Col 3:1-4: “Brothers and sisters: If then you were raised with Christ, seek what is above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Think of what is above, not of what is on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ your life appears, then you too will appear with him in glory.”

(Via USCCB.)

Our thoughts should be on the ultimate prize: Heaven. Things of this Earth distract us from that and should be placed in their proper place. When we “trudge the road of happy destiny” we must remember that the road is just a means to an end and not the destination itself.

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  1. I applaud this blog, and this is the first time I’ve read the phrase “trudge the road of happy destiny.” I see online that the phrase came from the Big Book, but I can’t seem to find an explanation for the word “trudge.” I don’t think a loving God would want us to trudge our way through any part of our life. Is that what parents would want for their beloved children? Just as we want our kids to be happy, I think God created us so we can simply enjoy our lives. And that means dancing and rejoicing down the road of happy destiny! Yes, there will be difficult milestones along the way, but I think His hope is for our overall journey to be a joyful one. Wishing you joy!

  2. You are basically correct, in that God would love for us to dance and rejoice down the road of life. However, if that implies a rejection or avoidance of suffering, then Genesis Chapter 3 would be a myth. Also Jesus’ taking up His Cross to suffer and die for us would be in vain if we didn’t follow His example. We are called to be like Him, and He had stated that His disciples must “take up their crosses and follow Him.” God the Father obviously loved Jesus, and asked asked no less of Him than to trudge the road to Calvary. We must do likewise to reach our happy destiny in Heaven, where we can dance and rejoice for eternity.

  3. You raise a very interesting point about what it means to “take up the cross and follow Jesus.” If Jesus’ last words were, “It is finished” before he died for the ultimate forgiveness of our sins, then why should any of us need to repeat what has already been done perfectly by our Savior? When Jesus took up the cross, he was giving his life to the service of others. I think this is what Jesus is asking us to do — not to suffer, but to love others. To devote our lives to others. And in that devotion, in that total focus on others instead of ourselves, we find greater peace. As the old saying goes, “Pain is mandatory, but suffering is optional.” Thank you for the opportunity to share some thoughts!

  4. By your point then we must also disregard St. Paul’s letters and his examples, particularly Colossians 1:24. Bearing in mind the note in the NAB translation on that oft misinterpreted and misunderstood passage: “…What is lacking..: although variously interpreted, this phrase does not imply that Christ’s atoning death on the cross was defective. It may refer to the apocalyptic concept of a quota of “messianic woes” to be endured before the end comes; cf Mark 13:8, 19-20, 24 and the note on Matthew 23:29-32. Others suggest that Paul’s mystical unity with Christ allowed him to call his own sufferings the afflictions of Christ.”If we are Christians, we emulate Him as we are a part of His Mystical Body. We needn’t seek out suffering, just accept it as a part of our Fallen condition and unite it to His sufferings on the Cross. This is what Jesus said in Matthew 16:24, “Take up the cross…” He knew the kind of death He would have, a crucifixion, and suggested we accept it in part.”It is finished” doesn’t mean what you think it means. It merely means that His life on Earth was at a conclusion as was His part in His redemptive purpose, namely overcoming the Sin of Adam. He won the victory, but there is still time remaining before His return. His sacrifice is continued by His Apostles and their successors in the Church by way of the Mass and the Sacraments, which was why He established the Church in the first place.Suffering is not optional for Christians. It is redemptive in nature as it allows us to participate in Christ’s mission, like St. Paul wrote, and Jesus admonished.

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