Let me begin this article where I left off in God's Plan For Salvation. Humanity is created in God's spiritual image, which means we are more than flesh, bones, muscles, and a complex array of cells attached to body organs. A protein substance known as Laminin is as a body 'glue' to bind the natural body's cells to tissue in the body. Ironically, this substance in the body is in the shape of a cross.
Important also to understand is that human nature is a combination of body and SOUL. Our souls require another type of glue to keep us attached to the supernatural life. The essential 'glue' for our souls is called Grace. There is Sanctifying Grace and Actual Grace. Sanctifying Grace is entirely a 'gift from God' of participation in the spiritual life through the indwelling life of God's ONLY Divine Son in our soul when baptized 'in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.' Once this sanctifying Grace has been infused into our immortal soul, it is a 'ticket' into those 'pearly gates' of eternal life. Actual Grace, in contrast, is not a part of the soul but is grace humanity hears in one's intellect and acts on with one's free will to maintain, sustain, and even increase the sanctification of the soul.
Many times, people will refer to grace as a blessing. While there is no doubt that having supernatural life is to be blessed, Grace is undeserved, unmerited favor from God, while a blessing is better understood as a 'reward' or 'recognition' for staying true to God's indwelling presence in our soul. God's blessings are meant to encourage us to continue doing the good actions of Faith. Blessings can be spiritual or temporal blessings that grow the gifts of the Holy Spirit: Knowledge, Understanding, Counsel, and Wisdom of God and God's ways as well as the Spirit gifts of Fortitude, Piety, and 'Fear' aka Respect for God to avoid the temptations that abound to do what satisfies only ourselves in our myopic lifestyle — forgetting that 'ticket to the pearly gates' that seems so far off, to do what makes one happy and popular with others NOW!!
Adherence to THE WAY Christ established for our benefit, keeping holy the Lord's Day by worshipping God at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass and using the day to rest from the daily labor will bring temporal and spiritual blessings to one's life on earth. Material blessings are that of food, drink, shelter, and work to stay busy, be it for a paycheck, a hobby, or to volunteer and serve another's needs. Spiritual blessings are health, peace, happiness, humble contentment, and the ability to give and receive love through quality relationships with family and friends. Spiritual blessings provide a well-formed conscience and the ability to hear God's 'actual grace' counsel and avoid situations that bring temptation to sin or, if we have 'slipped' a bit, to ask forgiveness for sins.
Be assured, a sincere soul living 'religiously' in those Sanctifying graces of the Sacramental Presence of Christ found within the One, Holy, Apostolic Catholic Christian Church of Jesus Christ will have to endure a 'cross' in this current society 'bent on individuality.' Blessed are they who stand firm in God's Way, Truth, and Life and are not pulled down to the same manner of human actions.
Imperative it is to persevere in the sanctifying graces of Christ's church: the taking of His Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity that raises us up one day to be 'wholly' the embodiment of Christ in heaven. If so nudged by Actual Grace to the Sacrament of Reconciliation, to not ignore the prompt. Sanctifying Grace is the ticket to eternal life. Do not lose it through a myopic view of living only for the pleasures of this earthly life. Salvation is ‘gift of God’s grace’ which then ‘we’ must choose to work out in our Acts of Faith, the ‘offering of our good works’ in union with Christ’s Sacrifice of self at The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, taking of the Holy Eucharist with the pure intent of transforming our life to His life, the Sacrament of Reconciliation as prompted to confess any sins that mar our sanctified life in Christ.