2 Thessalonians 3:6-14
We instruct you, brothers, in the name of (our) Lord Jesus Christ, to shun any brother who conducts himself in a disorderly way and not according to the tradition they received from us. For you know how one must imitate us. For we did not act in a disorderly way among you, nor did we eat food received free from anyone. On the contrary, in toil and drudgery, night and day we worked, so as not to burden any of you. Not that we do not have the right. Rather, we wanted to present ourselves as a model for you, so that you might imitate us. In fact, when we were with you, we instructed you that if anyone was unwilling to work, neither should that one eat. We hear that some are conducting themselves among you in a disorderly way, by not keeping busy but minding the business of others. Such people we instruct and urge in the Lord Jesus Christ to work quietly and to eat their own food. But you, brothers, do not be remiss in doing good. If anyone does not obey our word as expressed in this letter, take note of this person not to associate with him, that he may be put to shame. Praise be to God always.
“Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the road broad that leads to destruction, and those who enter through it are many. How narrow the gate and constricted the road that leads to life. And those who find it are few. “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but underneath are ravenous wolves. By their fruits you will know them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? Just so, every good tree bears good fruit, and a rotten tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a rotten tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire. So by their fruits you will know them. “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name? Did we not drive out demons in your name? Did we not do mighty deeds in your name?’ Then I will declare to them solemnly, ‘I never knew you. Depart from me, you evildoers.’ “Everyone who listens to these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on rock. The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and buffeted the house. But it did not collapse; it had been set solidly on rock. And everyone who listens to these words of mine but does not act on them will be like a fool who built his house on sand. The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and buffeted the house. And it collapsed and was completely ruined.” This is the Truth. Peace be with you.
Do we want to build our Easter home before we dig our lenten foundation? Everyone loves the idea of resurrection, we will live in peace in the new heavens and the new earth with a room or a mansion in the joy and glory of God, everything will be good, everything will be easy. Yet, Resurrection comes afterward. First, comes the work and the trial. We have gone out freely into the desert with Christ so as to dig a foundation of a solid faith based on love which endures highs and lows. We have gone out into the desert full of sand, so that we can dig until we find the Rock- Christ. We go out into the dryness of the desert to find Christ, so that our faith is not destroyed in the storms and trials that may lay ahead. We go into the desert to find Wisdom who is Christ, who tells us to not have a superficial faith or to feign faith so that others will approve. In digging during lent for the firm foundation through prayer, fasting, and alms-giving we prepare for our Easter home. Today we fast with Christ for tomorrow we will dine at His banquet. Today we speak with Christ in Prayer, so that tomorrow he will tell us “I knew you”. Today we give alms, so that tomorrow Christ the Poor Man will rise up and say, “Come to me, you who have done the will of My Father.”