In an article at the Philippine Daily Inquirer written in 2012, it stated that the Philippines leads the world in believing in God – 94 percent. This is followed by Chile at 88 percent and then the U. S. with 81 percent. Belief was lowest in former East Germany (13 percent) and in the Czech Republic (20 percent).
The surveys found atheism was most widespread in Scandinavia and the former Soviet Union — with the exception of Poland — and that belief in God was generally declining worldwide, but not in Russia, Slovenia, or Israel.
When one believes in God, one most likely believes in Eternal Life. This is perhaps what our faith is all about: that we gain Eternal Life. As the Gospel tells us, “God so loved the world that He gave his only begotten Son, that all who believe in him will have Eternal life.”
Three reflections on Eternal Life:
- Eternal Life reminds us that we are only in this world passing by. This is something very important because, with all the activities of our everyday lives, we lose our bearings. We forget what is and isn’t important. We forget what are treasures made in heaven, which is the kindness that we show people, versus treasures made on earth, which we will leave behind. Whenever we are so consumed by this world and stress and anxiety overcome our lives, let us ask the question, “Will these things that consume me matter in the next life?”
- Eternal life is a choice. We are reminded that because of God’s love, he desires our eternal life. In other words, he will do everything and anything for our eternal life. Yet, it always takes two. If the other party does not accept that love, God will surely not force Himself. How can we be in heaven when we ourselves reject the love of God?
- Death is not the end, it is a transition. The world does not want to talk about death as if it was not inevitable. However death is not an end, it is merely a transition to the next life. Hence, we all strive to have a meaningful death and this can only happen if we have lived a meaningful life.
How do we gain Eternal Life? Jesus said that at Judgment Day, the sheep will be separated from the goats. The sheep will be given eternal life. Why? “When I was hungry, you gave me something to eat…” May the love of God, who gave his only Son, inspire us to love others as well.