When I was pregnant with each of my children I would go to Adoration of The Blessed Sacrament and marvel at how when I praised God my infant would move around in my womb. As soon as I stopped, the baby within me would stop as well. At first, I couldn’t believe what I knew was happening, so I tested it out a few times. I would begin to worship, and my baby would start to move in my womb. I would stop and my baby would stop. I knew that baby was praising God right along with me. I should not have been surprised, after all didn’t St John the Baptist jump in his mother’s womb upon Mary approaching with Jesus in her womb (Luke 1:39).
When my youngest Isabelle was around 4, I picked her up from preschool one day and took her to adoration with me. I explained how she needed to sit still and be quiet, since other people would be praying. She surprised me by how quiet she became when we entered the church. After we left, I asked her how she felt, and she responded “Jesus makes me feel so full” I think this little girl with the sweet dimples put it more eloquently than any adult I have heard explain it. The fullness she experienced was the fullness that only comes when you open your heart to God.
When we spend time in the intimate presence of God we are changed. It’s like when we go to the beach, while just lying there we are changed. We come home and everyone can see the visible glow of how the sun touched us. When we spend time in the presence of the “Son” we may think nothing has happened but there is a glow in our spirit that we walk away with. “All the angels in heaven gaze with ecstasy at the image made on your soul after each holy hour you make in the presence of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament; (excerpts from Letters to a Brother Priest.)
For those of you not familiar with Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament; let me explain. The Catholic church believes that Jesus is fully present in the Eucharist; Body, Blood Soul and Divinity. At exposition a blessed host is placed into a monstrance (a beautiful vessel to display Him) The faithful come and sit in silence and sometimes with meditation music and spend time with Jesus. Our Lord asked the disciples to watch and pray with Him for an hour, so many faithful will do a full “holy hour.” The whole point is that we spend time with the physical presence of Christ. (http://www.stmaryanacortes.org/portals/stmaryanacortes/CMAdmin/Benefits_of_Holy_Hour.pdf)
Let us learn from the example of Mary. As soon as she is filled with the Holy Spirit and conceived Jesus, the first thing she does is go and visit Elizabeth. She doesn’t keep this joy and wonder to herself; she takes it and shares it with someone. When we spend time with Jesus, we become so filled with Him that our first response to His love should be how can I share what I have received? When I walk out of adoration, I take His beautiful presence with me and am called to share it with others.
I challenge everyone this busy Advent season to find some time to be quiet with our Lord. Sit in silence with Him and let Him whisper to your heart. In the end you will walk away like my daughter feeling full, not of the weariness of the season but of the peace of Christ.
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