Tuesday, June 05, 2012

Because I Thirst

After a whirlwind graduation weekend in Detroit, I am home again, home again and so very glad to be here. Kudos to Dave for keeping the ship afloat and sending off our oldest for a week of high adventure. Preparations apparently involved Dave saying, "Tim, go get packed" and Tim doing so without much fuss or bother.


It was a full weekend, as these things usually are -- lots of coffee, lots of Scrabble, lots of running people here and there.We dedicated a good portion of graduation morning helping my nephew create a board game for U.S. History called Fight to the Finish.  On this topic, I have drawn two conclusions:

1. My sister likes school projects about as much as I do.

2. I have forgotten an astonishing amount of basic facts about World War II.

I bugged out of board game prep to go to 12:00 Mass with Ainsley.There I was treated to three special graces:

1. Holding a sleeping Ainsley for most of Mass. This was a treat not because she was quiet, but because she's nearing three and moments of holding her still and and stroking her hair and feeling her gentle breathing are becoming fewer and fewer. Bliss.

2. A quietly inspiring homily. Nothing flashy -- just good, solid stuff.

3. A singular appreciation of being in the presence of God.

As I genuflected in the direction of the tabernacle, I was struck by my thirst for God and the comfort I experience in His presence.

I thirst.

The Missionaries of Charity mount a crucifix in each of their chapels. The crucifix tends to be a realistic one that shows the wounds of Christ. Each crucifix has a sign or inscription that reads I Thirst.

Jesus thirsts for us. He thirsts for deep communion with our souls.

We thirst for Him -- I thirst for him. I have felt depleted for some time now. I can say it's been this year -- a year indelibly marked by long working hours and travel on Dave's part. But, really, I have felt depleted for a few years now. Is it the back to back babies? Being in my late forties? Dealing with teenage angst? My lack of exercise?

Those are probably all contributing factors. But when I read this earlier today, I thought that's it. Sally writes:

And what my confessor says to me, time and again, in his quiet way, is, "Well, you can't give what you don't have." In other words, if I'm running continually on hot, it's because . . . damn, I hate these tidy little metaphors, but the radiator is empty, okay? I'm running on a deficit of prayer, a deficit of quiet, a deficit of contemplation.

One of the best aspects of summer is the flexibility we have with prayer and the sacraments.

(Okay, in the interest of full disclosure, what I appreciate the MOST about summer is that I don't pack four to six lunches every morning, but one of the BEST aspects of summer is the opportunity to grow closer to God).

This morning we will reflect on this prayer pulled from the Missionaries of Charity website:

I Thirst for You. Yes, that is the only way to even begin to describe My love for you. I THIRST FOR YOU. I thirst to love you and to be loved by you – that is how precious you are to Me. I THIRST FOR YOU. Come to Me, and I will fill your heart and heal your wounds. I will make you a new creation, and give you peace, even in all your trials I THIRST FOR YOU. You must never doubt My mercy, My acceptance of you, My desire to forgive, My longing to bless you and live My life in you. I THIRST FOR YOU. If you feel unimportant in the eyes of the world, that matters not at all. For Me, there is no one any more important in the entire world than you. I THIRST FOR YOU. Open to Me, come to Me, thirst for Me, give me your life – and I will prove to you how important you are to My Heart.

We can look to our faith as a source of consolation, as the impetus to overcome our faults, as the cause of our hope and joy. Faith is, of course, all these. But at the heart of it all is relationship -- a deep communing with the author of it all. In the fullness of my Christian walk I have, in the words of the psalmist, tasted and seen the goodness of the Lord; I have been to the green pastures.

I want to get back there.

Yes, partly I want to get there so that I can apply the grace of God to this situation or that glaring fault, but mostly I simply want to abide in Christ with no other end point in mind but to see His face and hear His voice.

Because I thirst.

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