My dad has worked with cars his whole life. He's amazing with them. When I was younger, I remember him literally putting a car together starting with the frame. Each month, the four of us kids would get excited about seeing the progress, knowing that when it was finished, he would take the whole family for a ride in it-- and probably stop for ice cream on the way home.
Through the years, my dad has helped me purchase and maintain all of my cars. He knew how to look beneath the surface of a car for any issues before I bought it. He changes the oil, knows when I need new tires, and can figure out what's making that funny noise.
I, on the other hand, am clueless when it comes to cars. I can drive a car for days before I notice a tiny abnormal sound that my dad would have heard instantly. I don't see little paint smudges or dents unless he points them out. When I was a teen, I thought I was pretty cool because I learned how to check my oil. But despite having a dad in the business, that's where my car smarts ended. I relied on him for the rest of it and he's never let me down.
In some ways, that's like my spiritual life. I may think I'm pretty cool for having a relationship with the Lord and knowing a thing or two about my Catholic faith. But in the end, without the Church, I'm clueless.
I can go for months without noticing a sinful attitude that's been creeping up unless I get a full tune-up in the sacrament of Confession. Often I run on empty without realizing I need an hour with Jesus in Adoration, or to receive Him in the sacrament of Holy Eucharist.
The Church is amazing at taking care of us. She provides so many opportunities through her priests, ministries, and Sacraments to look beneath the surface of our lives and notice the dents, smudges, and weaknesses that are slowing us down on the road to Heaven. The Church is ever ready to cleanse us, renew us, rebuild us, and fill us with grace on this beautiful journey.
In your prayer today, ask the Lord how He might be calling you in for a tune-up in one (or several!) of the Sacraments. Thank Him for the gift of the Church and for never giving up on us.
Rely on the Church. Because the Holy Spirit is behind her, she will never let you down.