At some point in my life, the only reason I tried as much as I could to receive the holy Eucharist at Mass was because I knew my dad would ask me series of questions if I failed to receive communion. He usually asked; “what sin did you commit that made you stay away from receiving? One day, I knew I wasn’t in a state of grace but I knew my dad was close by watching. This made me go to receive regardless. I wasn’t ready to answer questions from my dad.
However, on my way back from the altar after receiving, I broke out in a heavy sweat. My eyes stopped seeing and everywhere became blurry. I suddenly became strengthless and was staggering back to my seat with all the strength I could summon. Although my eyes were open, I could not see because everywhere was blurry. I can’t still remember how I could find my way back to my sit.
This passed as soon as I knelt down to pray. The blurry vision went away and after a while I stopped sweating too. I regretted receiving that day. I was ashamed of what I had done and apologized sincerely to God. I remained tired till I got home. This happened a few months after my first holy communion and I never tried that again in years.
The next time I tried that again was about 12 years later. Again my dad was around, and again I was afraid of his confrontations, and even more ashamed of sitting down while my mates went to receive. I received even when I knew I wasn’t supposed to. Nothing happened.
However, a few days later, I went for confession. I forgot to confess that I received communion in sin. But the priest reminded me. He asked me; “when last did you receive communion?” I told him. I told him I received communion in a state of sin. He expressed shock and disbelief.
As at when I received, I didn’t really understand the gravity of what I did. But the shock in this priest’s eyes made me understand. He made me understand that I had committed an atrocity! An abomination! And I was ashamed. He told me I was a hypocrite! “How could you do that?” he asked me. I was sorry for myself. It was then I understood that the body of God is sacred. God is holy and it is an abomination to bring him into an unholy place (a sinful soul). It is like bringing a curse upon yourself.
After that day I was thankful to God. I was thankful to God that He made me realize these things. I was thankful that he put it in my heart to be sorry. I was thankful that he used these small signs to teach me that He is holy and should never be brought into a sinful soul.
After that day, I didn’t dare approach the altar in an unworthy state. Even if my father, mother and all my siblings were beside me, as long as I wasn’t worthy, I’ll kneel right there and receive God spiritually. So that He’ll come into my heart of His own accord and not me proudly dragging him into my sinful soul.
Since that encounter with the priest, I tried hard to avoid sin, and also to confess as often as I could. My soul desires its saviour. It is my responsibility to prepare well to receive my Lord so that my soul may delight in His presence. There is this peace that comes with receiving the body of Jesus worthily. This intense burning feeling right there in our heart. That intense feeling of love our hearts feel because our saviour is right there within us resting. Not just Him, but alongside His mother, and His holy angels. When you receive Jesus in Holy Communion, you become a holy ark, bearing God, His mother, and his holy angels.
This is why it is a taboo to receive God in a state of sin; God is holy and nothing unholy (sinful) should behold Him.