As she faced the Maker at the last Judgment, she knelt before the Lord along with other souls. Before each of them laid their lives, like the square of a quilt, in many piles. The angels sat before each of them, sewing the quilt squares together into a tapestry that was their lives.
But, as her Angel took each piece of cloth off the pile, she noticed how torn, ragged and empty each of her squares were. The cloth was shredded and filled with giant holes! Each square was labeled with a part of her life that had been difficult, filled with challenges and temptations that she faced in her everyday life. She saw all the hardships that she had endured, (those were the largest holes of all).
She glanced around, no one else had such squares and others had only a tiny hole here and there. Their tapestries were filled with rich color and bright hues of great worldly fortune.
She gazed upon her own life and was disheartened. As the Angel was sewing the ragged pieces of cloth together, she saw that they were threadbare and empty, like binding air. Finally the time came when each life was to be displayed, held up to the light and the scrutiny of truth.
The others rose, each in turn holding up their tapestries. Their lives were so filled with color. It was then her turn to rise.
Her gaze dropped to the ground in shame. She hadn't had all the earthly fortunes. She had love and laughter... but she also had trials of illness, death and false accusations that took from her, the world as she knew it. She had to start over many times and she often struggled with the temptation to quit, only to muster the strength to pick herself up and begin again.
She had spent many nights on her knees in prayer, asking for the Lord's help and guidance in her life. She had often been held up to ridicule, which she painfully endured; each time offering it up to the Father, in hopes that she would not melt within her own skin beneath the judgment gaze of those who had unfairly judged her. And now, now she had to face the truth. Her life was what it was, and she had to accept it for what it had been.
She rose and slowly lifted the combined squares of her life to the light. An awe-filled gasp filled the air. She gazed around at the others who stared at her with eyes wide open. Then, she looked upon the tapestry before her. Light flooded through the many holes, creating an image.
There it was... In Glory... Splendor and Beauty. It was the face of Christ.
Just then, our Lord stood before her, with warmth and love in His eyes. He then spoke, "Every time you gave over your life to Me, it became My life, My hardships and My struggles. Each point of light in your life is when you stepped aside and let Me shine through, until there was more of Me than there was of you. Welcome Home My Child, Welcome Home!!
Once again, I must ask myself... Am I willing to make life... my everyday activities an offering to God? Am I willing to completely surrender my life to Him?
I know that it is only when I allow God to have full control of my life... that His beauty will shine through it. And, it is only when I allow the Holy Spirit to lead and guide me on a daily basis... that I will emanate His light and glory. For when I embrace God fully, He can fully use me.
The struggles and the burdens I face will be transformed into a testament of His love for me. His grace will be bountiful and sufficient to carry me through every aspect of my life here on earth. And, heaven will be that much sweeter... when I am called to my final home and I see the "Face of Christ!"