This Matters (And Only This)

The depth of God's love is astounding.

I want to share a story with you.

I was feeling down the other day. There was no glaring reason for it, but I felt a little empty, a little hurt, and a little sad.

(For the record, I have a great life. But everybody has their crosses, and I like to be dramatic about mine.)

I was driving with my family, and we last minute turned the car around to stop by the church for confession. “If there’s a long line we won’t stay,” we told ourselves, for some reason.

The church was empty but the two small lights – one above the confessional, the other by the tabernacle – let us know of the presence of the priest, and of the Lord.

As I waited my turn for confession, I emptied out my thoughts and feelings.  The organist came in quietly, and began warming up for Mass.  He played a familiar melody. “Ahh what is this song, I love it!” I thought.

And then the words to the songs came to me,”Where you there when they crucified my Lord?”  In my heart I heard the one truth that matters:

God loves me, and He died for me that I might live in joy with Him.

I knew this.

I have felt before the peace that accompanies this truth.

Yet as life moves along my mind and heart become filled with so much.

With worries, about budgeting and my vocation and that fight I got into with someone I love.

With details, about lesson planning and meal preparation and what I am going to wear tomorrow.

With annoyances, about the bugs in my kitchen and the laundry that I need to fold and the messy habits of a particular someone.

And then, in His mercy, my Lord gently reminds me, again, for the millionth time, what truly matters in life. The truth that He loves me and died for me. The depth of joy in this truth!

God’s kindness to me continued as I walked into the confessional and told of my impatience and judgments and lack of gratitude.  The priest asked me, out of the blue, “Is something worrying you?”

I paused, surprised. Yes, but I don’t know what!

He asked again, “Is something bothering you?”

I replied with something, that was sort of it but not completely it.

The good man told me, “You need to get to the root of the problem. Talk to God about what is on your mind, about what is bothering you, and everything will fall into place.”

I left in tears of joy. (So dramatic.)

The simple knowledge of the one truth that matters should be enough for me. Enough to remind me to be happy, to treat others with respect, to be humble.  Yet in His goodness, my Lord took care of the details as well. In that conversation with the priest, God told me that He cares about what is on my mind, about my worries and dreams.

I share this story with you in the hope that it reminds you of God’s deep love for you, not only at the moment of His death for you, but now, in every moment, in every detail of your day. In your joys and sorrows, thoughts and worries.

He is there. Turn to Him and live in His peace.

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