Thursday May 11, 2017 Long

“I long for all of you with the affection of Christ Jesus.  And this is my prayer; that your love may abound more and more.” Philippians 1:8-9

Paul wrote beautiful letters to the churches that he formed throughout the ancient Mediterranean.  He spent time with these people and built relationships that made him LONG for them when he left to start other churches or eventually be imprisoned.  That longing each of us can identify with and relate to when miles and circumstances separate us from those we love.  Or when death separates us that deep longing can be a hole in our hearts that lasts a lifetime.  When children leave home, the empty nest syndrome is really a longing for things the way they were… a relationship of closeness that is now gone forever.  When asked what the BEST Mother’s or Father’s Day gifts are… time with the kids is what people my age always say.

God longs for us and His deep emotions can be felt in the deepest recesses of our souls.  It calls to you and me!  Have you ever been thinking of someone and the phone rings and it is them?  That is the same thing that happens when God is longing for us.  Obviously, His omnipotence draws a bigger response.  St Augustine said…  “My heart is restless until it rests in You?” Holy Longing is a book written by Ronald Rolheiser who explains that deep need that is resolved in spirituality.

Today with separation a real part of the family dynamic, I think most of us can understand St Paul’s longing for the church families that he created.  No amount of Facetime or Skype can replace a hug or sharing a meal with those I love.  I long for my daughters and the homes we shared, and my grandchildren, when I went to their birthday parties at Chuckie Cheese and now attend their graduations and weddings; I even long for my siblings and the chaos that was life in my big family when we were all growing up together.

I know God that You have taught me about longing so I could know how much You love me and await my homecoming.  Like Paul I am torn between my desire to be with You and to love my limited time with those You have allowed me to create a loving relationship.  Please help my longings to always be HOLY! 

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