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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The Real Joy

, vaklJohn and Simon are friends because they are neighbors. Even though they are raised in the same community, lifestyles separate one from the other.

One night, coming from a party some distance from home, John and Simon drove together in John's car. Unfortunately John was drunk and lost control of the wheels as they approached a curved side of the road and they rammed crushing into a brick wall.

Instantly, John woke up and realized he was walking with Simon.

"Are we dead?" He asked Simon with melancholy in his voice.

"I suppose we are" was his quick reply. He sounded like an angel, with no tint of worries in his voice.

John panicked upon knowing death. He must be going to hell then. John is an easy-go-lucky guy. Women were like a piece of garment for him, he changes as he wishes. Gambling, wines, and other vices are his pastimes. He felt an overwhelming joy once he indulges of these things. He can afford it anyway with stable job and rich parents. But despite all the vices, he maintained his good social standing. No criminal records whatsoever. In short, he is a good man. His being a man of the world made him think he qualified for "hell".

But he was surprised further realizing he was with his religious friend. "But, why are we together?" He asked.

"I don't understand either." Simon replied.

'It must have been a mistake if Simon is also in hell',John thought to himself.

Simon is a real good man in his own sense. No vices at all, with good job, with good parents as well. But the joy he experienced which he kept on telling John is about his life in a religious group. He felt great happiness when he solemnly bond with friends together in worship. He sensed fulfillment when singing praises to God, serving his brethren in blood and faith, joining other religious activities, and doing good things all the time.

"There's no heaven or hell after all!" John concluded.

Simon didn't understand too but whatever is true he was still happy to be with his longtime friend. He turned to John and said "If this is heaven then you are not a sinner. but if you are indeed a sinner Jesus must have saved you."

When a door of light opened ahead and an angel welcomed them, John was convinced they are in heaven. And it was confirmed when the angel said, "Welcome to Heaven."

When they entered the hall, all they can see are angels shouting and singing praises to someone setting on the throne. They were really joyful in what they are doing.

Excited, Simon rushed to join the signing and praising as he was used to it. His garments glowed like the angels.

But John was left behind feeling alienated. Then the angel approached him and said. "Why not join with your friend?"

With a shame in his voice he said, "I don't feel comfortable here. Besides, I don't understand what they are singing and how they do it."

"My friend, what do you enjoy to do?" The angel asked.

"I love wines, girls, gambling, and others." He replied.

The angel smiled and said, "but there's no place in heaven like that."

"I am not worthy to be here, therefore". Simon answered sadly.

"But of course you are. Jesus' blood has redeemed every sinners on earth", the angel explained.

"But why I am still sad?" he asked.

"Joy is your own choice. You are indeed in heaven but you are bound and haunted by how you created joy in your heart. When you are on earth you immersed yourself to the joy the temporal world can offer. You never bothered to practice the joy that your Savior has told you that will last forever in heaven. Now that you are here you could not maximize the joy of heaven because your heart is used to the world. There's no hell for sinners, but the torment is you long for the things on earth and do not get them forever."

John's eyes were filled with tears as he watched his friend Simon enjoying every moment in his new abode.

In desperation, he rushed to the place where the door opened and closed behind them. Then the heavenly light broke out and was replaced by electrical lights.

John's eyes wandered and he found himself lying in the ICU.

As he rolled himself to his side he asked the nurse, "where is my friend?"

"He didn't make it sir." The nurse replied sadly.

Thinking of what he just experienced he whispered. "No, you are wrong... He made it home joyfully!"

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