OK, today, that may be a bad example…But let’s just say that you were going to spend an hour with someone very important to you. You know about it in advance, and you have time to think about what you’ll do, and how you’ll act. And you have control of the situation. In other words, if you wanted to, you could demand this person hike in Yosemite with you, and they’d do it. Maybe that doesn’t make sense if all you’ve got is an hour. Hopefully you can answer the question. If you were going to spend significant time with someone very important, how would you prepare? Would you Google (Bing) the person, find out what there is to know about him (her), and begin to write down questions you want to ask? What kind of questions would you want to ask? How would you dress? If it was a musician, would you spend time getting to know all their music? If an author, would you at least know every book they’ve written and what it’s about? Would you get a fresh shave/haircut, mani/pedi, hair color so you could be presentable? If you were going to be driving them around, would you wash and vacuum? If they were coming home with you, would you tidy and clean?
OK, now that we’ve established how you’d be with a very important (to you) person…what if we narrow it down? What if we say the person in question is…the all-powerful, One whom the universe cannot contain Who was, nonetheless, contained in the womb of the blessed Virgin Mary, One? What if it’s God? And if God is very important to you, how would you prepare to meet Him? Because as Catholics, we meet God every week at Mass. Do you ask him questions? Do you act like you want to get to know Him? How do you prepare for the meeting? Do you show up 2 min before Mass starts, rush into the pew, and sit there with everything passing into one ear and out the other, and rush out when the congregation applauds the choir (or before)?
It’s about attitude. Personally, I start Sunday morning with coffee, and the Divine Office. Until Mass is over, every conversation is fairly subdued, we’re getting ready to worship our Lord. We’re not discussing the baseball or football game, the latest news, etc. We’re getting in a Heaven state of mind. (We’re lucky we don’t have kids around…this would be a challenge if we did). On the way to Mass, we’re not rocking out to the radio, if anything we’re listening to EWTN or praying the Rosary. If we’re praying the Rosary, we finish before we enter the sanctuary. Invariably, we’re 15 min early. (Again, it’s just two of us, so that’s easy). And then we sit there in God’s presence, read the Mass readings, and worship. Sacred silence. In fact, when we really want to worship God, we begin on Wednesday or Thursday reading the Scripture readings for the Sunday, and reflecting on them for a few days. As the choir comes in, we get into the frame of mind, open our hearts, and ask God to show us the one thing he wants us to do to be a better version of ourselves. And we write it in our journals. Mine’s an online journal, a blog. You see, if I thought the person would say something important, I’d want to be sure I was listening, and then write it down so I wouldn’t forget.
Our lives change when our habits change. You could do any one of these things differently, and your life will change. Try it for a few weeks, and let me know how you did…