Grateful For His Most Precious Gift
Today marks an anniversary of sorts for me. It was seven years ago today that I returned to Mass after being away for almost 20 years. That Sunday in November came at the end of six months of prayerful preparation and a weekend that truly changed my life. (The details of all of this can be found in my reversion story- see sidebar)
From that Sunday forward I knew that I was "home" and had no desire to ever leave again. God had poured so many graces upon me and I was and am grateful for them all, but the one that I am most grateful for is the most precious gift of His Son Jesus in the Holy Eucharist.
This gratitude has taken on more meaning these last few days because due to a bout of the flu, I have not been able to attend Mass. This was the first Sunday I have ever missed Mass in these last seven years, I had to forgo my hour of Adoration this week , and daily Mass has also not been possible. It has been in these days of being unable to receive Jesus in this sacrament that I have realized just how precious this gift is and how grateful I am for the privilege of being able to receive Him so often. It made me think of those who live in areas where there is no priest on a regular basis, or those who live in places where they are persecuted for their faith and can not worship freely. I am truly blessed!
God permits all things and so I have been trying to see the lesson He has for me in all of this. Perhaps in these few short years I have begun to take Him for granted and the deprivation would help me to realize just how precious this gift is~ it has. I also need to thank Him more for all He has given for me; this awesome sacrament comes at the price of His very life for me.
Now all of that may or may not be the case, but I am sure of two things: One~absence definitely does make the heart and soul grow fonder, and Two~this minor illness has given me something to offer Our Blessed Lord.
I may not have planned to spend this anniversary in this particular way, but in one of His special ways, our Lord has given me a beautiful gift~the gift of greater gratitude for the gift of His very Self.
The shortest path to Jesus is through our Blessed Mother, so I would like to end this post with this Prayer of Thanksgiving I found by St Cyril of Alexandria.
Thanksgiving Prayer To Our LadyO most holy Lady, Theotokos, light of my poor soul, my hope, my protection, my refuge, my comfort, and my joy! I thank you for having enabled me to be a partaker of the most pure Body and most precious Blood of your Son. Enlighten the eyes of my heart, O Blessed One who carried the Source of Immortality. O most tender and loving Mother of the merciful God; have mercy on me and grant me a repentant and contrite heart with humility of mind. Keep my thoughts from wandering into all kinds of distractions, and make me worthy always, even to my last breath, to receive the most pure Mysteries of Christ for the healing of my soul and body. Give me tears of repentance and thanksgiving that I may sing of you and praise you all the days of my life, for you are ever-blessed and praised. Amen.