2nd Sunday after Pentecost 3.6.18 Real Presence
If Our Lord were to come again and walk the streets He would be very popular, at least insofar as people would welcome His healing miracles.
Yet, He tells us that He has not left us. He is with us always until the end of time (Mt 28,20).
And He will not leave us orphans (Jn 14,18). It is just that He is not visible now as He was then.
And visibility counts for a lot with us, as we very much rely on our senses to determine what is true or not; even when there are surer ways of knowing than sense experience.
His primary presence with us is in the Eucharist. There we have Him, body, blood, soul and divinity. He is as fully present in a consecrated host as if He were to walk into the Church.
We can believe this, and we do believe, yet we probably still would prefer Him in the other way, where we could touch the hem of His garments, or He could lay hands upon us.
But the sacramental way is what He chooses, and it must be the best way accordingly.
We could infer that He wants us to develop our faith in Him. We need to cultivate faith as a way of arriving at knowledge. To the point that I can say a thing is true, whether or not I can see it or explain it.
What God’s Son has told me, take for truth I do (St Thomas Aquinas). We start with the revealed truth and then build our response around that; rather than starting with our feelings, and then checking whether revelation squares with them! People with limited perception and even more limited obedience then announce that they no longer believe.
We will perceive Our Lord if we come in the right way, which is the way of humility, docility, patience, submission and the like. Not too many questions, and no argument.
Thus we grow in faith, and having done that, we are then more likely to see miracles and have our prayers answered.
Perhaps the biggest miracle is when an otherwise doubting fearful complaining disciple can come to faith and take his place quietly in the ranks of believers.
Faith is worth more than physical healing, because it brings us closer to God’s inner life. But we might get the healing as well.
There have been many eucharistic miracles recorded. There would probably be a lot more if we had more faith. But then we would need the miracles less.
Others may go on doubting and mocking. It is up to us who do believe to atone for sins against the Eucharist; and, having been made stronger ourselves, to help others to believe.
Our Lord is challenging us to come to Him, and seek Him out; to submit our lives to Him so that He can do whatever He wants with us.
This is scary for us, but with growing trust it becomes easier.
He wants us to interact with Him. It may look like nothing is happening when a group of people are praying in Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.
Is it nothing, or is it an intense exchange of ideas, of grace, of the motivating power of love, and the wisdom to apply that love in action?
The more people doing this, the more things are going to start moving. It is the same with prayer at Mass. We are not just sitting there, but interacting with God.
We are still so inexperienced at this. There is still so much reliance on the senses and the feelings, to overcome.
We let God be God, and take our places before Him, which is to be in humble worship.
It is all for our good that the Lord has set things up this way. It is a less direct approach than we would at first want, but it is good for us if we work with it.
O Sacrament Most Holy, O Sacrament divine, all praise and all thanksgiving be every moment Thine.