I only missed church for one week, yet felt, yesterday, as if it had been months since I took communion. The kids were hanging out in the nursery, so I had a rare time of solitude in my pew. I knelt and buried my head in my arms and spent the time before the service began in prayer.
Around me I could hear the bustle of people entering the nave, sitting, chatting quietly, greeting one another. The choir was practicing. But none of it distracted me from the sense that I was sitting in the presence of Jesus.
I had things to confess. Things to tell him. I realized, for example, that the reason I didn't approach the pharisee woman in Chicago was really because of fear. I had to admit that to him. (And will, perhaps, confess it to my priest at my next confession.)
He challenged me. "What if I ask you to leave your church?"
"I will do as you ask."
"What if I ask you to stay?"
"I will do as you say."
I even imagined, for a moment, what I would do if I became pregnant. 42 years old. Would I be afraid? Would I want to have all kinds of prenatal tests to insure the baby was healthy? Would I be willing to have the baby no matter what? In my heart I said, yes, yes, yes, Lord. I would pray for strength and courage.
My friend Pete jokes that he gets hit by the two by four of Christ now and then.
Yesterday I was whacked.
During communion, I wanted to weep with relief.
Two weeks is too long to go without it.