Mailbag: Never Give Up Because Our God Is Often A God Of The 'Last Minute'
Did you ever notice that our God is a God of the last minute? That's to say, He often intervenes a minute after the last moment -- when we think matters are beyond hope.
The message: never give up!
Consider those with near-death experiences. There are many cases where folks are considered beyond hope and even "on the other side," and then are brought back, usually because so many are praying for them.
They describe going through a tunnel to a light but then being told (often by Jesus, sometimes by a deceased relative, or an angel) that they must return, and when they do, they note relatives praying around the "deathbed."
After tasting Heaven, many aren't too happy about that!
God can be a God of the very last moment because He sees all and knows all and controls all -- including time itself. He can slow things down. He can speed them up. He can accomplish the universe (never mind the rescue of a human) in an instant.
Meditate on that: With faith in God, we are never without hope, or beyond any time limit.
We have so many cases of severe cancer that disappeared after the patients were sent home to die and even a politician in the Philippines who had a severe case of AIDS from a blood transfusion -- and yet now, after countless brushes with death -- crisis after crisis, but met with faith -- has no trace of the virus. There was the case of a fellow named Stan Rutherford of Lakeland, Florida, who doctors thought had "died" during surgery. He was placed in a room where they put cadavers but suddenly came back to consciousness in the presence of a mysterious woman (he says it was the Blessed Mother) who then vanished.
Oh, those mysterious strangers! Take it from Michele Bottesi of Rochester Hills, Michigan, who writes to tell us:
"Two times in the summer of 2003 I was called to visit the tomb of Father Solanus Casey [who has been declared "venerable"] at St. Bonaventure in Detroit.
"During the first visit my sister suggested that we touch our scapulars to Father Solanusís tomb, and we did. During the second visit a week later I felt a strong impulse to purchase a womanís scapular (white cord) in the gift shop, but did not when unable to think of anyone specific who was in need of one.
"Shortly thereafter, God placed me at the scene of a terrible accidentin which a young man on a motorcycle was hit by an SUV on Rochester Road (five lanes of fast road) and critically injured. The fact that the man was not hit by a second car was in itself a miracle, as he was thrown vertically across several lanes of the road.
"The scene was horrifying, but I felt compelled by God to get out of her car, approach the man whose broken body was convulsing terribly on the road, remove my scapular, and place it on him.
"In doing so, I realized that the scapular was a manís scapular (brown cord); Godís plan at St. Bonaventure was for me to buy a replacement scapular because He had plans for the one she was wearing.
"Very awesome. For some reason this young man was given this pivotal intervention by God and Father Solanus, so he would have a scapular as his life hung in the balance. I felt compelled to remain until the paramedics were notified that the scapular was to remain with the young man.
"A man with completely gray hair who was dressed as a priest (black clothes, white collar) appeared on the scene just after the young man received the scapular. I only remember saying to him, 'Thank Heaven that you are here!' At no time did he approach the injured man, who was just feet away from us.
"He was amazingly calm and did not seem worried about the young manís condition. He seemed so peaceful. After we spoke I did not see him again. After instructing the paramedics about the scapular I felt Divine permission to leave the scene and all the way home felt the immense presence of the Divine Will of God in all that had just taken place: total consolation which superseded any worry for the man despite his horrible condition. That heavenly consolation lingered for about two months.
"Two points seem to stand out from this event: the scapular is a sacramental from God. And the second? God wants us to unite ourselves to His Divine Will and trust in Him always, despite how tragic events appear to us."
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