Now and at the Hour of Our Death

My husband and I were recently at a wedding, seated during dinner with some friends of the groom. During one of the speeches, a groomsman emphasized the importance of making the most of today, as tomorrow is never guaranteed. A man at my table leaned over and told us the speech reminded him of something he had heard about the two most important moments of our life.

Can you guess what those two moments are?

Now and at the hour of our death.

If you’ve been praying the Hail Mary for several decades like many of us have, you might rush through and not pay close attention to the words. But if you are really taking your time and contemplating just what you have asked of the Blessed Virgin, you would see that you are asking for her help and intercession at two key times in your life.

Now. It’s what we should live for but somehow it’s so hard to do. Too often our mind gets stuck in the past, replaying moments of regret or longing for good times to return. And many of us obsess over the future, living with anxiety and worry for plans that may never come to fruition. 

With a healthy balance, we are able to focus on the here and now. Doing so allows us to be present to those around us, to enjoy and appreciate the life we have now without thinking too much about what we had or what we could have. Gratitude lives in the present moment, and God wishes to meet us here right now—not yesterday or tomorrow.

At the hour of our death. We may not know when it will be, but this is the one moment in the future that we should be planning and preparing for above all others. It’s a process that continues over the entire course of our lives, but in this present moment we should be working towards preparing for the hour of our death.

But readiness for death doesn’t mean that we are overcome with worry and preoccupied with the end of our lives. No, it means that we are ready now. It means that we are constantly growing and striving towards holiness. It is ensuring our soul is always in a state of grace, we are detached from sin and we frequently receive the sacraments. So really, “now” and “at the hour of our death” are very intimately linked. They may be minutes, days, years, or decades apart, yet they need to be closely united.

Keep praying for our Blessed Mother’s intercession at these two most important moments. When the time comes for “now” to also be the hour of your death, Mary will not abandon you. She will be with you, leading you to her Son.

Lindsey is a wife, mother, and contributing author at Relevant Radio. She holds a degree in Journalism and Advertising from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Lindsey enjoys writing, baking, and liturgical living with her young family.