Here we are, Holy Saturday, and I only kept one of my lenten promises and it wasn’t the one that I was going to write a blog post for each day of lent. I didn’t make the Good Friday “Celebration of the Passion” either. Maybe next year but I will be going to Easter Mass tomorrow morning.
It’s funny how the years just seem to fly by and I lose track of what happened when. I guess it was Easter Sunday four years ago when I went to Mass for the first time in many, many years. It felt pretty strange, not like I didn’t belong there, and it wasn’t an uncomfortable feeling, actually I felt like I was home, I think it was just that it wasn’t the right time to be back. I wasn’t ready. I went back the next week, but that was it for a little while.
Why wasn’t I ready? I’m not sure exactly. I remember I was sitting towards the back of the church and looking around to see who was there. I was wondering if there was anyone I might know, maybe some family or old friends. I was judging people, trying to guess why they were there, what their motives were, did they come every week, things like that. Like I was so high and mighty, me the one who hadn’t been to a Mass in years. “Look at me, here I am, I’m the righteous one, what about you?”
How wrong I was. And once again it was a random piece of scripture that I read that taught me a lesson. Once again God gave me a lesson by showing me a sign through a random opening of a book.
“[But] take care not to perform righteous deeds in order that people may see them;a otherwise, you will have no recompense from your heavenly Father. When you give alms, do not blow a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites* do in the synagogues and in the streets to win the praise of others. Amen, I say to you, they have received their reward.” – MT 6:1 -2
“When you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, who love to stand and pray in the synagogues and on street corners so that others may see them. Amen, I say to you, they have received their reward.” – MT 6:5
I didn’t intentionally go to Mass in order to be seen by others, but once I was there, that is why I was there. “Look at me, here I am.” Maybe I didn’t know it but God sure did.
I think it was a few more months before I started attending Mass regularly. I would make it for three or four Sunday’s in a row, then miss a few, them go for a few weeks. It seems that now I am going every week, religiously (pardon the pun). I have realized that it is a small price to pay for what He has given me. An hour a week for all I have isn’t even close to being a fair trade. I really need to do more.