The right answer might not be what we think it is. We don’t have to get closer to God. We can’t – God’s right here! God dwells in us, temples of the Holy Spirit! Getting closer to God’s will might be a better goal because that alignment is often very far off. It’s what most of us struggle with. If we find ourselves thinking that Lent is not working, that the enchantment of “feeling our religion” isn’t happening this year, then maybe the answer is to practice a new consciousness. What if we all tried to spend one hour a day trying to be consciously aware of God in every person we meet and every place we go. Keep searching with our eyes, our mind, our heart. If we practice believing what we profess – that God is in our midst – then we are much more likely to awaken to the presence of the Divine! At the very least it will begin to change how we see and relate to other people as we practice seeing and believing the Divine presence within each one of them, regardless of how they may treat us!
This is what Pope Francis is hoping will happen as we draw near to immigrants and refugees, to all those who are marginalized…that we will come to know them as sister and brother, as images of the Creator, as children of God. In whom is it most difficult for me to see God? What deeper reality is God calling me to this Lent? To whom am I being called to “draw nearer”?