When you’re in love with someone, you pretty much don’t care where you are or what you’re doing, as long as you are with that person, wouldn’t you agree? There’s not much need for an agenda or complicated planning, you just want to go somewhere – anywhere – and be together doing something with that person, the one you love.
But because we’re human, our relationships have the tendency to lose their luster with time. Unfortunately, many couples break up because they’ve “fallen out of love” or just don’t feel like they’re in love anymore. They leave each other at precisely the time when they could make their relationship stronger, richer, and even more romantic than before.
This sad fact can directly translate to the number of Catholics who stop coming to Mass on a regular basis. They’re just not “feeling” anything when they’re there. They see families reminding them of what they don’t have. They’ve stopped praying and don’t see the point in continuing to come. That’s sad, particularly because, just like the couple that believes they’ve fallen out of love with each other, that is precisely the point when their relationship with God can become something so much better.
You know that nothing in your life that is worth having was easy to get. Think about that for a minute… what are the things you have that are really valuable to you? How easy was it to obtain them? Just take a look at all you are going through to find your perfect match. It’s not easy, it takes work.
For me, relationships are the most important thing. Having children was very painful, but when my babies were placed in my arms, my joy was overwhelming. Marital relationships, family relationships, friendships… all of them take work. So why would your relationship with God be any different? Why let something so special just fade away?
This is one reason why Pope Benedict XVI instituted the “Year of Faith” back in October. In the same way a couple attends Marriage Encounter and takes advantage of the opportunity to improve their relationship with each other, this is now your chance to re-connect with God and fortify your relationship with Him through the special graces He has set aside specifically for you.
Love takes work, not just feelings. You have to pray and receive the sacraments. You have to spend the time with Christ. No relationship can last if there is no communication and if you are constantly apart. But the great thing about that is the reward your work brings about. The Catechism of the Catholic Church reminds us:
If you knew the gift of God!” The wonder of prayer is revealed beside the well where we come seeking water: there, Christ comes to meet every human being. It is he who first seeks us and asks us for a drink. Jesus thirsts; his asking arises from the depths of God’s desire for us. Whether we realize it or not, prayer is the encounter of God’s thirst with ours. God thirsts that we may thirst for him (CCC 2560).
God Thirsts For You
As Jesus hung on the cross, He said it even then. I thirst (John 19:28). He loves you and He longs to be with you. God is calling you to come closer to Him so you can experience the intensity of His love for you.
I encourage you to take advantage of all the wonderful ways to live this Year of Faith. As always, the USCCB website has many resources to help you do this.
And for an added boost, I’d like to introduce you to Elizabeth Duffy if you don’t already know who she is. Aside from being my sister-in-law, she is also an accomplished writer with a regular column on Patheos.Com. You can read her recent article, Re-Igniting The Romance Of Faith, for an even deeper, more interesting look at this Year Of Faith.
Feel free to send me your questions and comments at firstname.lastname@example.org.