Thursday, April 02, 2009

The Distance Between Us

Sometimes I consider myself a shadow of my former self, at least spiritually. Whereas before my days and nights were spent on prayer, service, sacraments, scripture, and fellowship, now what occupies my time is work, work, and more work. Instead of dwelling on it too much, however, I just try to do my best every single day and long for a time when I can pay more attention to my spiritual life.

I took a leave off work today to rest, and thus was able to spend a longer time praying, go to mass, and attend bible study. I knelt at church and talked to Jesus, and felt just how much I had missed Him, like I missed other people. I realized that He was always there for me, even during my busyness, and I was the one causing the gap between us.

I was the one rushing through morning prayers. I was the one saying no to service. I had let go of most of my service opportunities because of something that was bothering me to the limits of my faith. Somebody asked me to pray over her yesterday and I replied that I did not feel worthy. I ended up praying for her, despite my own struggles, and being blessed by the words that came to me through the Holy Spirit. The other day, Fr. Brian asked me to give a talk for the youth leaders' training, and I wanted to say no, because I did not feel worthy. But when was I ever worthy? a voice inside me asked. Wasn't everything I did for the Lord brought about by His grace and power, and not by anything that I had done? Besides, what I was being invited to talk about was very practical, and I knew I wanted to do it. So I said yes.

Without my knowing it, I had slowly been hardening my heart towards Jesus. I had let doubt and fear rule me, instead of faith and trust. I had forgotten how He wanted to be a major part of my life, and had shut Him out, like a file I could go back to when I was good and ready. As I was staring at the cross earlier and telling Him that I did not understand where my life was going, Fr. Steve, who was leading the bible study, said, This is what you do when you don't understand: you move on.

He was referring to something else related to the Gospel according to Mark, but I was struck by what he said. Instead of over-analyzing, again, a situation that had been baffling and, admittedly, paralyzing me the past few months, I should just move on.

I do not know how to move away from this burden. But I do know that I want to move towards Jesus again. I am thankful that it's almost Holy Week. I need this time to rest. For no matter how far we distance ourselves from God, it only takes one step to go back to His embrace.

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