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Kids are funny. One of my favorite kid things happens only when they are toddlers. My kids would fall down and then look up to me to see if they are okay or if they should cry. I learned quickly that if I just said, “You’re okay! Dust it off!” and smile, then my kids would be fine.
Until, of course, there is blood. If they fall and are bleeding, they know it is serious and tears are most certainly called for. How do they know? Did I accidently teach them that blood means a more serious injury? Or do they just kind of know?
With our modern medical discoveries, we know how important blood is. Blood carries oxygen and nutrients to our cells. Blood protects us from bacteria and viruses. Lose too much blood and you die. Blood is life.
Even without our medical knowledge, the Hebrew people understood the importance of blood. For them blood was sacred because it meant life and death. When Moses wanted to signify a covenant between God and the Hebrew people, he used blood because this relationship between God and his people is a life and death relationship. Moses knew that without God, his people would die.
No different for us. Without God, we die. But instead of bull’s blood, we have God’s own blood given to us by Jesus Christ. When we go to Mass, we actually consume Jesus’ body and blood in the Eucharist. We no longer sacrifice animals because Jesus has given himself as the sacrifice. That sacrifice was made on the Cross 2000 years ago, and we participate in it every time we go to Mass.
The Mass isn’t just music and words. At Mass we remember, reinforce, reestablish, renew, and recommit to our deeply intimate and profoundly powerful relationship with God. And we recommit to that covenant with God by receiving Jesus’ body and blood. It is this relationship that will save our life. Jesus shed his blood, gave his very life, so that we may have life with God forever.
Go to Mass. Pray for a deeper desire to be close to God.