Yesterday’s post at the 54-Day Rosary novena site (for Day 4) gave a quote from Saint Thomas Aquinas that, the instant I read it, brought me to tears. It expresses exactly how I’ve always felt, in my heart, toward God.
To love God is something greater than to know Him.
– Saint Thomas Aquinas
I mentioned in a previous post how when I was a very young child I would sit quietly in church, gazing at the stained glass window, and just loving God. I had no concept of God, I knew nothing of God, and yet I knew I loved Him. I feel exactly the same now. I’m coming in to all of this new, with barely any concept of God except some half-formed (half-baked?) ideas which I’ve accumulated over the years, which I figure I might as well discard.
But I still have the enormous love and gratitude toward God, and I think that’s what has led me to this point. I felt so completely dissatisfied with any spiritual practice that did not include God. Any spiritual system that doesn’t acknowledge God feels empty. Because who do you thank for all this? For this incredible, beautiful creation, and for one’s own being?
I immediately recognized this feeling when I heard an interesting point being made in one of Father Robert Barron’s videos. I’ll quote the section here, but I highly recommend that you click on over and listen to the whole video. The part I’m quoting begins at the 4:55 mark.
…The argument from contingency: It’s a fancy way of saying that the world as we know it exists, but doesn’t have to exist. You and I are here, but we don’t have to be here, there’s nothing necessary about our being. And it’s true — the world as we know it is fleeting, it’s passing. Therefore we have to go outside the world, to God, God who does exist through himself, and who therefore grounds and creates the whole of the world that we know.
Relatedly, Dorothy Day, when she was in the process of coming to the Church (she was going through a process of conversion), she had a child. And one day when she was on the porch of her house and she was holding her child, she said, “I felt a gratitude that was so enormous that I knew it would correspond to nothing in this world.” There was nothing, nobody in this world she could possibly thank that would correspond to the gratitude she was feeling.
That’s it; that’s exactly it. What she was sensing was God. This world, myself, my child, none of it has to be here, yet it’s here. And the proper response is “Thank You” to the Person who made this.
I hope to spend the rest of my life doing just that — thanking God for His blessings. I feel as though I’ve wasted half my life wandering around like a “Prodigal Daughter”, when I could have been “home” in my Father’s house this whole time… So I want to make up for it by spending my days in prayer (as constant as I can make it!)
As much of it as possible: prayers of praise and gratitude and love of God.