The meaning of human life and its value is determined by one's life goal. If the world is going to burn down in flames, together with all the worldly things in it, a human life, then, will be worthless, meaningless and only chasing after the wind. One needs to lift oneself above the ground, see the sky and direct one's earthly ways towards the Church, which has no yesterday, today or tomorrow, but only an eternal, loving God.
The moments we experience the touch of God is when the true meaning of our lives is revealed to us. We are born and we die in anguish; we live a life of torment and loss. The world is drawing us down, and there is no way to break free without God's help. The only way to overcome this gravitation is by taking up the cross, as God himself was taken up into heaven on a cross.
Eternal life is not some endless journey across the galaxies; it starts with the small things in our lives. To speak of eternity means to speak of every day, hour and minute of our lives. The minutes become years, and years become life and eternity. If we can direct this small piece of eternity towards God, if we learn to be grateful for every moment in our lives; and continue to reach out to God without closing our hearts to the pain and suffering of others without having pity for ourselves; if we make an effort to notice, understand, hear and support a fellow human being next to us; if we resist the despondency and desperation born out of our grumbling and lack of humility; if we can remain grateful to God for every day that we have lived, only then may we embrace eternity. Following this path will not be an easy thing; instead, it will demand that we commit to working hard all of the time in the name of love.
The way to live is for every one of our thoughts and movements to be open to God. Eternal life is life before God.
Death, by contrast, is the lack of faith in the immortality and in the ultimate victory of love. Sin and death are a large part of what we are, but Christ's love is also alive in all of us. Repent, as the Kingdom of God is approaching (Matthew 3: 2). The Kingdom of God is the kingdom of eternal love. The only way to enter this kingdom is to recognise our unworthiness, but also to have faith in the power of God's love to forgive, to transform us and to teach us how to love. Eternity is for the brave souls only; it is for the ones who believe in their immortality in their ability to live in the image of God. When we are together with God during the Divine Liturgy, the eternal love and humility conquer the mortal sins; they are dissolved in the Chalice and are burned away.
When we are together with Christ, there is no other way but love, because God is love; it is a love that conquers death and separation; it gathers from the Cross the people who are not attached to worldly things and are on a quest of beauty. The world has been defaced by people who are trying to live without God.
The church is the body of Christ, a place where God and the human being become one. God's love begets love for one's neighbour. As long as God's love exists in the world, the world will be alive. As soon as this love becomes extinct from people's hearts, the world will die.
But when one is touched by God's grace, and one becomes one with God, one will see nothing else but God. One begins to look at the world differently, through God. One will no longer see the world as if he were doomed to extinction, but rather as someone who has found eternal life and regained a meaning to one's life.
In this world, suffering cannot be avoided. True joy can only be for eternal life, for God. By meeting God, one breaks shackles and the limitations of the laws of physics that govern the world. There is nothing that can take away from the joy of this freedom because this joy is emanating from God. One's heart is filled with gratefulness, and life regains a meaning and becomes a priceless gift. There is nothing more to wish for, as one already has it all. There is nothing more than a soul may aspire to than meeting with God.
To be honest, I’m nobody. I know that but I also know that there is the devil who sneers at me gleefully, “Aha! You’re done!” I say, “No, I’ve only just begun. I want to change. I want to be different. I want to serve God.”
The real war is going on inside us; there is a sin within us, and we are all called upon to defeat it. Let us all pray, my dear brothers and sisters, for peace to return to our lives, and for the turmoil to end. Sermon by Father Andrey Lemeshonok.