I recently started going for Novena and have since decided to try and make a commitment out of it. That’s because I came to realize that attending it was a chance to see it is a constant testament of God working in our lives.
I first went because I needed the Sacrament of Reconciliation one morning and there was time for confessionals after the Novena.
I went through the Novena without really focusing on the prayers. I didn’t listen to the letters of petition or thanksgiving, not least the homily. Instead, I was keeping my eye on the confessional queue, ensuring that I would be able to secure my spot.
I only had one aim then, to restore my spiritual pact with God. It was purely transactional. I had sinned, and I had an “ATM” mindset, to get my pardon as was due to me.
But even in the bad, God can find the good and refine our intentions.
After my confession, I went to an empty pew, to do my penance, and to renew my relationship with God. A peace had settled over me. And as I came to a calm once again, I felt prompted with an invitation to stay for the next Novena service, which was about to start.
This time round, I paid attention. And I was reminded of God’s goodness. In the petition and thanksgiving letters that were read out, I heard of His grace and generosity; His mercy and His blessings. Each and every one, a miracle and a God moment for me to remember of His presence in our lives.
As I sat, I was also reminded of my ‘conversation’ with Mother Mary during my pilgrimage to Fatima two years ago. Then, I had asked our Mother to help me discover a relationship with her. Instead, she told me that the best relationship I could have with her, was to have one with my mom.
Indeed, God had let me wander around, exercising my freewill and choices, until the paths lead me back to Him. My mom had been attending Novena on her own without fail every Saturday morning. And it reminded me how my return to the faith was by my observation of my mother’s unfailing dedication to Mass.
So, in the pews, as the final hymn to Mary was sung, I knew that God was revealing to me, that going to Novena with my mom, was teaching me to be the Son as Jesus is to His mother, and to God.