PAUSE FOR REFLECTION
by Ken Rolheiser
Walking with Jesus

God came to earth to walk with us. God was present to Adam and Eve both before and after the fall. Later Jesus assures his followers, “If you have seen me you have seen the Father” (John 14:9). 

Thérèse of Lisieux discovered a path to heaven at an early age: "I felt charity enter into my soul, and the need to forget myself and to please others. Since then, I’ve been happy.” Thérèse “walked from victory to victory, beginning, so to speak, 'to run as a giant'!” 

Thérèse’s “Little Way” may be expressed in this sentence: We are, in Christ, God’s children, and we ought to love our Father in heaven with a filial love full of confidence and abandonment. Thérèse walked with Jesus. Confident of Jesus’ love, she would say, “You may sleep in my boat; I shall not awaken You.

“You are hiding Yourself, but I know well where You are hidden: You are in my heart. I do not feel it, but I know it. I believe in Your love for me, and I believe in my love for You,” Thérèse said.

What is it we are running toward if not a deeper relationship with God. If our relationship with God is not an exciting love affair, we need to examine our part in it. God is love, and we know for sure that God loves us with an everlasting love. If love is lacking, the fault is not with God. 

We are already in an eternal reality that often escapes our realization. The reign of Christ has begun, and we are already in the time of judging the dead and rewarding the prophets and the righteous. (Revelations 11, 12). Death has been destroyed and the evil one defeated by the blood of the lamb.

Easter opened heaven for us. “The earth quaked, rocks were split, tombs were opened, and the bodies of many saints who had fallen asleep were raised. And coming forth from their tombs after his resurrection, they entered the city and appeared to many” (Matthew 27:51-53).

Another great realization we should have because of Easter is that we are united in the Communion of Saints as fellow believers who are still on earth. Our loved ones in heaven already enjoy God’s presence. They do not have to wait until the final judgment.

Easter reminds us that we need drama in our spiritual lives. The events of the passion story still engage us with positive results. The veil in the temple is rent and heaven is opened to us. God’s mercy is his greatest gift! “Today you will be with me in paradise,” Jesus said to Dismas. 

We were created for heaven. This life has beauty and blessings, but also suffering and pain. God is ever present to help us and has given us angels as companions. Jesus is in our hearts and physically present through the bread of life.

I'll walk with God 
From this day on
His helping hand I'll lean upon
…
There is no death though eyes grow dim
There is no fear when I'm near to him
…
I'll walk with God 
I'll take his hand
I'll talk with God he'll understand
I'll pray to him
Each day to him
…
And I'll never walk alone
While I walk with God
(Mario Lanza, “I’ll walk with God”). 

(561 words)