Sin and Salvation | Thursday Thought

  • Posted January 16, 2014

This week’s Thursday Thought is about sin and salvation. Many people would much rather ignore that such things even exist. But if sin and salvation exist, what constitutes one from the other? What are the ramifications of each?

Before getting into it, let’s first define sin and salvation.

Sin – the separation from God

Salvation – the reunification with God

If you believe in God, then you very likely believe in another realm. And most believers anticipate leaving this Earthly life, to be reunited with their Creator in that realm. So if we want to be honest about it, EVERYTHING we do on Earth is in preparation for that FINAL destination.

And so these definitions of sin and salvation become agonizing. Why? Because in every decision and action we take, we need to be in a constant Q & A with ourselves asking….”Is this action going to separate me from God, or unify me with God?”

It’s a really difficult question to ask so many times….simple….but very difficult, because the answer is almost never one we want to hear. But through addressing uncomfortable topics, hopefully we can grow, in this case spiritually.

 

Walking into Sin

Obviously, not EVERYTHING we do will bring us closer to God. So we have to be aware of this on a deed by deed basis. Watching Toy Story probably won’t bring you closer to God, but at the same time, it probably won’t separate you all that much from God either.

But there are movies that contain elements that DO separate us from God. When the answer is obvious that a deed, or time spent, will separate us from God, then it’s best to avoid that certain occurrence.

walk into Sin and Salvation | Thursday ThoughtYou may have heard it said that you ‘fall’ into sin, but that’s not exactly how it works. Instead, it’s more like we WALK into sin. Sin is very much progressive, and more often than not, you will have many opportunities to turn around from the direction you are heading. However, for some reason, once we start walking away, we just keep going.

It’s not like sin is a sinkhole that just appears, and we fall into it. But there is actually a road we must travel down to put ourselves in the position to sin. Sin doesn’t sneak up on you and say, “Boo! I caught you!” No, we open ourselves up to it and are drawn to it. All along the way, we have ample opportunities to turn around.

It’s like seeing an uninhabited building on fire, sure people can try to put out the flames from a safe distance, but would you run into the building to save it? What purpose would that serve? It’s just suicide if there is nobody there to save…spiritual suicide. What else can we expect but for the building to collapse in on us.

So we voluntarily put ourselves in the position to sin.

 

Sin and Salvation GAS GAUGE

gas gauge | Sin and Salvation | Thursday ThoughtAnother way to look at Sin and Salvation is as a gas gauge. “E” represents being really far from God, “F” represents being really close to God. Throughout the day, our spirit is pummeled with impure thoughts, temptations, venial sins, etc. All these things aid in taking gas out of our spiritual tank. The further we are from God, the weaker our defenses and spirit will be to the onslaught.

So going back to the example above, Toy Story will only drain a drop or two of gas. But a porno movie will use up almost all of your tank, leaving your soul in peril. And in this state, you will be susceptible to other mortal sins.

Luckily, we are able to fill the tank back up as much as we want.

As a Catholic, I take advantage of the Sacrament of Reconciliation. After confessing sins, I literally feel my tank being refilled and immediately feel closer to God..

That’s why during the Sacrament of Reconciliation, we ask for God’s grace in AVOIDING THE NEAR OCCASIONS OF SIN. It’s always near, but it’s up to us to actually make an effort to walk towards it, or not.

Another way to come closer to salvation is through our interactions with the lowest and least fortunate among us. Really, we should be thanking groups like homeless people, the needy, and even our enemies. The manner in which we positively treat them can provide us simple steps in walking back to God. Focusing on bettering ourselves in this area will help in setting our path in the correct direction, and refilling the tank.

Sin and Salvation aren’t necessarily permanent, but the tank is in constant fluctuation. The goal is to be mindful of keeping it as full as possible, for as often as possible. Always remain cognizant of the fact that less harmful venial sins can lead us to soul jeopardizing mortal sins.

 

What to do?

walking  Sin and Salvation | Thursday ThoughtIf you find yourself on the wrong path, you aren’t automatically damned for all eternity. Take the STEPS towards refilling your tank.

When you are walking down the wrong path…..stop…..ask for guidance from God…turn around…..and walk the other direction. It’s not all that easy, but it really is that simple.

Whichever stage we find ourselves in life, we are preparing to be something else or go somewhere else. Whether an elder on the deathbed, or a babe in the womb…. the short term destination may differ, but ultimately, we all strive for the same final place.

Recognizing sin and salvation in everyday life will aid us in reaching that destination.

 

With God’s Will

T

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