I mean, brethren, the appointed time has grown very short; from now on, let those who have wives live as though they had none,
and those who mourn as though they were not mourning, and those who rejoice as though they were not rejoicing, and those who buy as though they had no goods,
and those who deal with the world as though they had no dealings with it. For the form of this world is passing away.
1 Cor 7: 29-31
The placard wearers pronounce that the end of the world is nigh and predictions of the end of the world seem to be ever more frequent. If true, it makes sense to stop and forget about the here and now. But how soon is nigh? One day time will stop. But in spite of placards and predictions we really don’t know when that is. So what does Paul mean? Because while we’re waiting for the end time we need the love of family and friends, we need food, clothing and shelter, all of which involve dealings with the world.
Does it not mean that we need to get our priorities right? Take care of our immediate needs and then leave things in the hands of God? Or even leave things in the hands of God if our immediate needs don’t seem to be met, in earthly terms? Does that mean trusting Providence, in the form of our neighbour (friend or stranger), in times of need?
“Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.” Lk12:32
Or to paraphrase Karl Rahner, “When everything takes on the taste of death and destruction … then is the hour of the Spirit.”
God, the good times take care of themselves. Grant me the faith that trusts in you when things are not so good.