A priest dies and is waiting in line at the Pearly Gates. Ahead of him is a guy who’s dressed in sunglasses, a loud shirt, leather jacket, and
Saint Peter addresses this cool guy, ‘Who are you, so that I may know whether or not to admit you to the Kingdom of Heaven ?’
… The guy replies, ‘I’m Bruce, retired Continental Airlines pilot from Texas ..’ Saint Peter consults his list. He smiles and says to the pilot,
‘Bruce, take this silken robe and golden staff and enter the Kingdom.’ The pilot goes into Heaven with his robe and staff.
Next, it’s the priest’s turn. He stands erect and booms out, ‘I am Father Bob, pastor of Saint Mary’s for the last 43 years.’ Saint Peter consults his list. He says to the priest, ‘Take this cotton robe and wooden staff and enter the Kingdom.’
‘Just a minute,’ says the good father. ‘That man was a pilot and he gets a silken robe and golden staff and I get only cotton and wood.
How can this be?’ ‘Up here — we go by results,’ says Saint Peter.
‘When you preached — people slept.
When he flew — people prayed.
It’s an old joke but one with a certain amount of truth in it. I think it speaks of the fact that some people assume that their position will get them straight into Heaven, whereas the only entry is through the Grace of Jesus Christ. In the joke the Priest assumed that his occupation would grant him access but even more would grant him luxuries that others wouldn`t get.
I believe that Jesus Christ is calling people to Heaven necessitating a response, an assent to His Lordship, a recognition that we aren`t perfect and a repentance for our mistakes, but ultimately it isn`t through earning brownie points here on earth that will take us home; its through His Grace, His death upon the cross, His resurrection from the dead and His desire to be reconciled with His creation. That is what makes the difference.
I like the definition of Grace:…………………..
                                                                          G   Gods
                                                                          R   riches
                                                                          A   at
                                                                          C   Christs
                                                                          E   expense

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