Question 014.  

I sense a longing for something that I cannot explain – actually, it is more like a void that can’t be filled.  Is this normal?

This is a natural phenomenon, born of your rapport with your Creator… Our natural desire for God presents us with the dilemma of having to change ourselves, and in doing so we alter our relationship with God.  Through prayer, we turn to him order to reach him.

from St. Augustine Answers 101 Questions on Prayer by Fr. Ermatinger.


The empty place at the center of man’s heart can be a daunting thing once discovered; it speaks to man being not his own and the distance between man and the owner of this empty place.  Our desire to be with our Creator becomes the desire that our Creator should be within His Throneroom, His Temple, His Bridegroom Chamber.  Nothing created satisfies and all prove to be empty distractions that one quickly grows bored with.  Only God suffices and only a complete union with Him. In this life, the hope for this is a longing for the eternal banquet; even as God begins to take up His rightful place and the individual beings to pray internally, the longing actually intensifies.  The closer one draws to God, through humility and obedience, the more one purifies themselves, the more one “shuts the door”, the more one has a sensation of the distance between Creator and creature, which drives a longing that this distance should be overcome.  The greater the contemplation, the greater the joy, the greater the longing for the obtainment of that which is held in hope; full possession of the soul by God and union with Him in Mystical Marriage.  It is in this that both the good things and ills of this world become fleeting transitory things in the light of Him who is above yet alights upon the altar of the soul.


Sts. Volodymyr & Olha Ukrainian Catholic Church, Chicago
Photo Credit Eric Allix Rogers (edited)