Seeking Christ in One Another

Seeking Christ in One Another

The funeral luncheon, the Irish wake, the vigil at an ailing loved one’s bedside: in times of crisis, people gather. In moments of sadness, fear, and confusion, we gravitate toward one another. For some reason, the feelings are so much more bearable when we are not alone.

I’m sure that the disciples and their companions, gathered in the upper room after the Lord’s Ascension, did all of the things we typically do at these functions. I’m sure they hugged and talked and shared food, processing together the remarkable events they had witnessed.

But we don’t hear about any of that. We hear only that they prayed — fervently, and together.

Saint John Paul II famously said that “it is Jesus that you seek when you dream of happiness; He is waiting for you when nothing else you find satisfies you.” And I think that, whenever we gather, in good times or in bad, we think we are seeking companionship — but we are actually seeking God.

As I think back on the last few crisis-gatherings my family has had, I try to remember when we have stopped everything to pray together. I can think of a few times, but to be honest, they are too few. We are usually occupied with more practical tasks: planning the funeral, talking to the doctor, making the decisions, ordering the food. Just trying to survive through it.

But this is the busywork of sorrow, and it is a waste of our time. We would do better to follow the example of the disciples and remember that, in these dire moments, God is waiting for us.

“Of you my heart speaks; you my glance seeks.”  — Psalm 27