At Mass, have you ever let your mind wander during the readings and the homily? I know I have. And let’s face it: Not every lector is articulate, not every preacher is dynamic, and sometimes there are crying children. Sometimes those children have been mine!
However, this shouldn’t excuse us from being attentive during Mass. God himself speaks to us when Scripture is read in church, and God can touch our hearts through even the most inept preacher, if we are open and receptive.
Consider today’s gospel. At a synagogue worship service, and Jesus himself was both the lector and the preacher. As for the congregation, they were excited and kept their eyes locked on Jesus. As a result, they were “amazed” by Jesus’ gracious words, that God’s promises were being kept in their midst.
For us to be more attentive, I suggest three things:
1. Before Mass, pray for the grace to listen well and to hear whatever God might wish to say to us.
2. Come to Mass with a sense of excited anticipation that God does speak to us through his Word.
3. During Mass, pray for the lectors and the preacher, that they might be effective ministers of God’s Word.
Doing this is much better than tuning out, getting frustrated, rolling our eyes, or reading the bulletin. And it might just keep the good news from falling on deaf ears.