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So I celebrated Easter in NYC this year, and honestly it was a little strange not being with my family. I had a lovely Easter brunch with my friends, but at church, it was just me, myself, and I.
You know how you’re always way more observant when it’s just you?
So there I was, sitting in the pews, looking around at all the couples holding hands, worshipping together – it was a beautiful thing.
And in that very moment, I realized that I was sitting directly in between two full rows of nuns.
And I actually gave an audible chuckle out loud, thinking…OK, God. I see what you did there. I know I’m in my late twenties and a freaking virgin, but do you have to rub it in?!? Happy Easter to You, too, Big Guy.
Anyone who says God doesn’t have a sense of humor just isn’t looking hard enough.
But I became captivated by these nuns for the rest of Mass. I looked at them during the sermon, and every single one of them had this beautiful, peaceful smile on their faces. Not like some creepy permagrin or anything. But they just had this expression of complete peace.
They had an inner joy, that frankly I found missing from many of the bored, zoned out faces that were also present in the congregation.
And if I’m being really honest…an inner joy that was missing from myself, too.
How often have I just rested in His love for me? How often have I just sat and let His love wash over me and permeate every single cell of my being?
I mean, sure I listen to awesome podcasts by Fr. Mike Schmitz or other preachers and fill my ears with words and thoughts and messages about God, but what about just spending time, actually with God. How often do I just sit and feel His love for me, and let that change me?
And I’m going to be honest…the answer to that question is not something I am super proud of.
Jesus didn’t suffer, die, and rise again so that we could simply know about Him. He did all those things to be in relationship with us. To be our best friend. Our confidant. Our everything.
Those nuns were completely captivated by His love. At peace. Resting. With a radiating, subtle joy that only comes from knowing, claiming, and feeling His love.
And here we are, on the pinnacle of our faith – the quintessential example of His self-giving love for us: Easter – What a time to start making time to be with Jesus.
Because the truth is, we are not guaranteed tomorrow.
It’s been one heck of a year, with my mom’s stroke. And if there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that life is uncertain. And fragile. And things that we take for granted and time that we’re “certain” we have in abundance, is not always a sure bet.
And if there’s one thing that needs to be Numero Uno on our priority list, it is our relationship with Jesus. Jesus: the resurrected Lord whom we are celebrating this Easter season. We must get that right. We must have that figured out. Not tomorrow. Not next year. Not when we’re older and have sown our wild oats. Today.
I want to possess that peace I see in those nuns.
And that only comes from resting in His love.
Looks like it’s time for me to meet Jesus at the Cross, and just sit and be with Him.
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