Yesterday ended up being one of those dreary, drizzly late Autumn days that put me into an especially contemplative mood. Upon waking I fixed up some instant coffee by opening the tap and filling up my Santa mug, plopping in a few teaspoons of Folgers and unceremoniously heating it up in the microwave while the cat whined at my feet for me to drop a pinch of Purina cat chow into her little bowl and give her some fresh water. After that I headed back to my room, lit a tea light on my little makeshift altar/ prayer corner and sat down with a Santa mug full of Folgers, my IPad and my Monastic Diurnal and cued up Matins from Breviary.net. A short while later and the cat joined me, contented and purring on my lap.
Yesterday happened to be the Last Sunday after Pentecost, the last Sunday of the Liturgical Year and the theme was one of dread judgment, the fires of hell,burning evil worms and the gnawing regret of the reprobate in having to know that they blew all their chances at getting to Heaven. Very heavy stuff, yet quite appropriate to this time of the year both liturgically and seasonally. The dark, dreary days, the falling leaves and the creeping chill in the air speaks of death in whispers and brings to mind our mortality,while the end of the Church Year reminds us of the judgement that will be the fate of all of us. Despite the wishful thinking of many mainstream modern theologians and ecclesiastical personalities, our Lord and the saints are clear that Hell is real and that until we are safely either in Purgatory or Heaven it remains a possibility for all of us.
Later a friend and I walked on a trail near a city park. It was rainy, steamy and sultry November in Florida weather but beautiful. I can’t help but think of the things of God when I’m out in Creation. Someday,after the dread judgment, when all things are made new and transfigured in Christ, in the light of the Most Holy Trinity, even the trees will take on a sort of eternal splendor.