God’s Grace is truly amazing to me. There are many ways of thinking about how God works in our lives. A realization of His life active and present in us is itself a gift.
Today I had the opportunity to hear the confession of a number of the Sacred Heart High School students. I watched God bring forgiveness and healing to teenagers who were contrite and seeking God’s mercy. Christ was present to them. Last Saturday I went to the hospital to offer the Anointing of the Sick to a family friend who is dying. Christ was again present there bringing spiritual comfort, healing and forgiveness to him and to his children. Sunday I went to the closing devotions of 40 Hours at the parish of a friend. Christ was there being adored and worshipped in His Eucharistic Presence.
If you look around, Christ continues to be present and to work among His people. He is true to His promise: . . . “And behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age.” (Mt. 28:20) He was there at the wedding I witnessed last week. He is at each Mass that I celebrate, whether publicly or in private. He is here as I pray with or for someone who asks for my prayers. He will be there during next Sunday’s baptisms. He is even there each time I have to face suffering and death.
People will sometimes tell me that they don’t believe in God or that He doesn’t seem real to them. Why does God’s presence seem so real and obvious to me? It’s not that I am some mystic or spiritual guru. I am just an ordinary person, an unworthy sinner called by God and graced with the gift of ordination despite my own unworthiness.
As you continue your Lenten journey, why not make a conscious effort to look for and to be attentive to God’s Grace working in your life and in the lives of those around you? He is here with us in the poor, the suffering, the dying, the lonely, the young child, and the elderly. He is present in obvious ways and when we least expect it. He is present in the big events of life and in those quiet moments speaking to the depths of our hearts when we are alone in our inner room.
If you have a hard time perceiving Him, ask Him directly to remove the spiritual blindness from which you appear to be suffering. A thorough sacramental confession can be the quickest and most direct way to experience His presence as healing, forgiveness and mercy enter into your life.
He is here with us--all around!
Don’t miss Him.
Fr. Ed Namiotka