The particular church that I went to is a pretty, older church. It's one of those where you can small the sacredness. Others might describe the scent as a mixture of lingering incense and with a touch of mustiness, but to me it just smells holy. I love that smell. I love how the incense has soaked into the walls, leaving traces of the prayers of those that have gone before us. I love that I am enveloped in the ongoing worship of the Church. I love the way that the sights, the smells, and the quietness of the church immediately take me away from my current craziness into a new place. A holy place. A place that all of my other nonsense can be set aside for a half an hour for worship of and communion with my God.
I love that in the moments before Mass, our fellowship is not one of talking to each other, but of private prayer. Of course, each of these prayers is our own, but we are not alone in our time of prayer. Does that make any sense?
Then there is the Mass itself. I love hearing the Scripture, the familiar prayers of the Mass. All leading up to that one moment. The moment that time and eternity meet. The moment of consecration.
I wish I could tell you that I was able to participate in Mass in such a way that I soaked up every moment. The truth is, I was still easily distracted, and I couldn't tell you exactly what the Scriptures were yesterday if my life depended on it. Also, when I was done with Mass, I was still stressed, I still came home and avoided dishes and laundry, and whined on my blog instead. I was still so tired that I didn't even make myself dessert (which would have taken 30 seconds) and contemplated sleeping on the couch because it seemed like a lot of work to go to bed. Primarily because I can't get into bed without brushing my teeth. The tooth brushing was more the sticking point than the 20 feet to my bed.
You know, that's one of the other things that I love about Mass. Even though I can leave Mass and immediately fall into whining, even though I can be in the midst of heaven on earth in the Mass and still be distracted by the least thing, God is there. He is still offering Himself to me in the Mass and He will be offering the same love, grace and forgiveness at the next Mass that I get to go to, no matter that He knows that I will fall short that time as well.
Mass. Is. Amazing.