Saturday, February 5, 2011

responding to His invitation

This morning was just one of those mornings. I woke without enough time to eat or even shower before Mass, and rushed out of the house. I made it to the Shrine in time to go to confession before Mass, but my mind and heart didn't feel very reconciled to the Lord. Mass started, and while part of me was praying, my full attention definitely wasn't on the Word being proclaimed and the Sacrifice taking place before my eyes. On my mind were all the things I had committed to do today, various other things I felt I ought to do today, and a creeping anxiousness wondering how was I going to find time for all the things I wanted to do today.

"Come away by yourselves to a lonely place, and rest a while" (Mk. 6:31). The words from today's Gospel didn't really penetrate my heart until after Mass was over. I took myself off to the Blessed Sacrament Chapel, opened up my Magnificat and suddenly realized that Our Lord had spoken those words to me. I had gone to a quiet place to be with the Lord without even realizing that I was responding to His invitation.

There's a real temptation in "the spiritual life" to focus too much on oneself. Have I prayed enough today? Do I feel rejuvenated now? Do I do enough good works? Do I give enough of my money to the Church? At least, this is true for me. When things are going well in my spiritual life, I feel proud of myself and like I've finally got everything all figured out. When I don't spend enough time in prayer and my sins rise up before me, I become mightily discouraged.

Lord Jesus, I think that I should think of our relationship, rather than my spiritual life. Help me to keep my eyes fixed on You. Then, rather than being discouraged with myself when I fall, I will see only the burning love in Your eyes. Love strong enough to purify my faults and forgive my sins tender enough to invite me to be with You even when I'm tired and cranky.

"Lord Jesus I can rest on Thy Heart, for it belongs to me." -- St. Therese