Yeah, you, the charming little human reading this.

Look at this picture.

No. Like really look at it.

This is a picture of a random street in New York City in 1915.

Look at their faces. Zoom in. See their expressions. Let it sink in.

Here’s another one.

This is also from 1915 and is just a random pic of people dancing and having a good time.

You know what both of these pictures have in common?

Well, a lot, I guess, if you really nitpick it, but what I want to draw attention to is: They’re all dead. Every single one of those people in these pictures lived a life. They had childhoods, grew up, found careers, raised families, became old, had good moments and bad, went through the same emotions that you did, but, now, they’re gone. They’ve experienced the mystery of death and have gone off to face God, the One who knows all their faults and their virtues, their moments of glory and their not-so-glorious moments. And from there, they have gone to their respective eternities, heaven or hell.

“Did you spend your time making heaven? Or did you make your own hell?
Be honest with yourself, because what you build is where you get to go.” ~Cloud Cult


You will die.

Really, though. Don’t just brisk over that.

Think about it.

We all know this inevitable outcome, but rarely do we actually think about it. What legacy do you want to leave behind? What do you want to accomplish in your life? Who do you want to serve? Goodness? Evil?

We can so easily go through our lives forgetting about what is most important. We get caught up in the details, the specifics, the small petty things that don’t mean squat in the big picture.

The good thing about death is it brings everything into perspective. As they say, “Death is the great equalizer.” That stupid argument you had today about some idiotic disagreement with that “dense” (this is you saying that, not me) friend is completely irrelevant in the grand scheme of things.

On your death bed, your sins will be magnified. The deeds you should have done but didn’t will hurt. The things that don’t matter won’t. All the time you spent for yourself will make you writhe and squirm.

The time you spent for others, with others, the times you stood for truth, spread truth, the time you spent serving, loving and adoring God, they will make you smile. They will fill you with warmth and peace. They will matter. They will be all you were proud of doing and all you wish you did more of.

“Remember that you have only one soul; that you have only one death to die; that you have only one life. . . . If you do this, there will be many things about which you care nothing.” ~ St. Teresa of Avila


With this truth being laid out and, dare I say, meditated upon, (maybe that’s asking too much of you), who will you be? What will be the purpose of your actions, the goal of your days? Money? Fun? Pleasure?


Live for something! Be someone great. Shoot for the frickin stars.

Why not? What else is there to live for?

This is where we come to the main point of this-cough-incredibly eloquent, article.

Mediocrity is killing us. It’s grabbed ahold of us and has its hands around our neck. We’re suffocating in its filth. It’s the sin of today’s Catholics. We try to juggle being part of this world but also being Catholic. We’re good at not being too holy so that way we’re still liked by non-Catholics. We try to blend in with the world, blend in with others, and our Catholicism is just a little hobby we do on Sundays, kind of keep hush about, like it’s something that we do in the closet when no one’s looking

This why our world is so flipping messed up! Lukewarm, scared Catholics. It’s our fault. I think even the Bible has a little something negative to say about being lukewarm. Maybe I can find it….

Oh, yeah.

“Because you are lukewarm–neither hot nor cold–I will vomit you out of My mouth.” ~ Revelations 3:16

Strong words, eh? With good reason! Middling Catholics do not inspire. They do not change. They do nothing for God.

We lead by example. And with a terrible example comes terrible leadership and a terrible society.

Most Catholics are miserable, because we are no different than the world. We’re scared to stand apart, but this world is of the devil, so being disliked by it is a good thing! If you get ridiculed by it, even better! That means you’re different than them, and in today’s world that is good.

“If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own.” ~ John 15.

Do not be ordinary. Ordinary and average is not something to be proud of these days. So many just get by. It’s a generational motto. What’s the least I can do to get the most in return? “Get rich in just 30 days.” “Lose 10 pounds in one week.” That’s not how life works or how God works. You get what you put in. Hard work pays off.

Let’s live as soldiers of Christ should. God is on our side; let’s fight like it! Let’s have an impact, change lives, and be saints. Really. Saints. It’s a bold goal, but shooting for anything less isn’t worth it.

Jesus was absolutely radical. He spoke out and lived completely contrary to the times. He wasn’t afraid to make enemies and He followed His Father’s will fully, even if it meant pain and death and his friends abandoning Him and the world hating Him. He sacrificed His entire being for truth, for us. Jesus didn’t give just some of Himself, He literally drained every last drop of His blood.

Give your all.

“Cast yourself into the arms of God and be very sure that if he wants anything of you, he will fit you for the work and give you strength.” ~ St. Phillip Neri.


It will be hard.

Let’s do a double-take.

It will be hard.

“The saints did not become saints without many a sacrifice and many a struggle.” ~ St. Jean Marie Vianney

It will be a gruesome battle, day in and day out. It will take your entire life. You will want to quit. You won’t understand at times. You won’t want to at other times. But you must persevere. In trying times, remember what you’re fighting for. Remember who you’re living for. Your eternal life depends on it.

Persistence, dedication, and perfection will be your goals. Your family and friends will be your teammates. Mary and the legions of saints will be your cheerleaders. With virtue as your banner and the Name of Jesus as your rallying cry, you can gain victory against the devil.

“Bad times. Hard times. This is what people keep saying: but let us live well and times shall be good. We are the times. Such as we are, such are the times.” ~ St. Augustine of Hippo

You will fail. You will trip and stumble and fall flat on your face, but giving up is not an option. Quitting isn’t allowed. You must stand back up, shake off the dust, stitch up your wounds, and keep going. God doesn’t expect excellence, but He does expect persistence and passion.

St. Augustine sucked it up for 30 years, St. Paul literally killed Christians, St. Peter denied Jesus three times. You don’t have to be perfect, but you do have to try to be.

“A saint is a sinner that keeps on trying.” ~ St. Josemaría Escrivá

In the story of Lot, as he and his family are fleeing the immoral Sodom and Gomorrah, Lot’s wife took one last look back at the city and was, as you hopefully know, turned to stone. She wasn’t just looking back to catch a cool view of the burning city, but it was a representation of her heart. She still had an attachment to the hedonistic city. She had a longing for it.

On the outside, she was running away from the evil, but deep inside she wasn’t fully committed to God and still had an attachment to the things of the world. She wanted to keep a foot in both kingdoms, pretending to be God-fearing, but also enjoying the wicked pleasures of this life. That does not work. It will give you nothing. Living a fake, limp, uncommitted life, you will be truly dead inside, cold and stiff, a stone, unable to experience any true passion and unable to fully give yourself to God.

Are you Lot’s wife? Will that be your legacy? A nameless, listless, dead statue? Or will you be full of life and unrelenting dedication, like that of Lot?

Become a saint or die trying.

What else is there to die for?