Thoughts on Conversion
Converting our hearts to Christ is, however, something which we all should be doing every moment of our lives. It is a process we go through as we recall God's love for us--all the things which He has done for us and given us because of the free gift of His love. God is the Lover of Mankind! What joy that simple thought should give us at even the darkest moments of our lives. How much sin and the fear of death cause us to forget God's love.
Joy at the rememberance of God is a choice we make. Yes, we choose to be joyful. Joy is not happiness. Happiness, as Mother Angelica says, is a happening--it comes and goes. But joy can stay with us at all times. Our joy at the rememberance of God is heaven itself, while having a lack of joy because we forget God or become bogged down in "problems"--which, like happiness, are here today and gone tomorrow--this lack of joy is an experience of hell.
So, how can you know if your heart is really "converted?" Well, do you experience joy when you call to remembrance God's existence, His creation, His work for your redemption, His promise that He would be with you always unto the end of the ages, His merciful love for you which will never end? Or have you set up idols to replace God? (Your insubstantial "problems," your passions, your "identity," or some kind of narrow relgiosity which neither saves nor brings joy to the heart?)
Any thing, material or immaterial, whether it be a burden or a blessing, an aid or a source of agony, can become an idol, something which preoccupies all our thoughts, actions, and worship instead of the living God. Idols enslave us, whereas God gives us true freedom. So, throw away the idols which keep you from choosing joy, and run to God Whose arms are open to embrace you and Whose love is freedom and everlasting life.