Wonder and awe



I remember when I fell in love with the ocean.

I remember when it became a special place of prayer for me.

I could stand on the sand, look to the horizon and feel assured that God our beloved Father was listening.

The Irish have a name for it. They call it the “thin place.” It’s where you can feel that God is at work.

It reminds me of the sacredness of sitting in a pew on Good Friday, haunted by the memory of Jesus’ crucifixion.

It’s found in the joy of family baptisms and in the sorrow of family funerals.

And that was my frame of reference until March of 2020.

I’m an underweight diabetic. I figured that I couldn’t survive the COVID virus, so I decided to stay inside. First two weeks, then a month; isolation became my routine.

Every morning after my husband left for work, I sat on a corner of the couch in my family room. A few minutes before 9 a.m., I went to my parish Facebook site and celebrated Mass online with my pastor and my fellow parishioners.

A wise priest once told me to attend Mass whenever I possibly could. That was a long time ago, and I don’t think he envisioned life in a pandemic with me holding a laptop.

That was my only option for many months.

Before 2020, I believed that there were many spiritual blessings that came from participating in the celebration of the Mass. Now, after attending daily Mass for two years from the vantage point of my couch, I believe that more than ever.

Here’s what happened to me.

As I mentioned earlier, the ocean has always been special to me.

A few weeks ago, my husband and I ventured out and took a trip to the beach. It was our first time there in three years, and things were different.

Well, actually, they were the same. I was different.

The ocean was right where I left it, and it was as wondrous as ever; but I discovered that I had a new perspective.

I understood God was the Creator of everything, of all of our earth. The mighty oceans and the tiniest organisms. They were all His.

During this visit to the ocean, I humbly stood in wonder and in awe of His glory.

I believe that transformation started with me sitting in a tiny corner on my couch celebrating the Mass.