In our society today, we are inundated with so many material things and desires. We are surrounded by so many voices coming at us from all forms of the media. Our five senses are bewildered. The mind finds its receptors jammed: where to go, what to do next or at all. To make it all worse, we have lost our moorings. We have lost the foundational principles of who we are, why we are and where we are going.
The world cannot supply the answers, but God can. “Come aside. Rest awhile. Come to me all you who labor and are heavily burdened and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28 and Mark 6:31)
I want to urge you to respond to the Lord’s invitation. It is a call from the Lord, himself. “He knows how we are formed; he remembers that we are but dust.” (Psalm 103:14)
He understands our challenges, our trials and crosses, our difficult relationships, our physical suffering, our losses and our needs and he says, “Come to me …”
Unfortunately, that is often the last place we turn. The world says: Try this. Do this. Turn here. Go there. Buy this and your difficulties will disappear. We’ve bought that, haven’t we? We’ve tried this and that to reduce our stress and the challenges we face and nothing really works long term, does it? We can be tempted to cynicism, even despair.
God will not lead us down false paths. He knows our need – personally and completely. He formed us in our mother’s womb. He knows what we need and when and how and through whom. We turn to God and ask him to get into the driver’s seat of our lives and direct us toward the goal for which he created us. We try and seek to cooperate with his grace, his inspiration.
So how do we begin to live our daily lives, trusting in God? Find the Church nearest to you which has eucharistic adoration. A few parishes have perpetual adoration. Some have it a day a week; some have weekly benediction with a time of adoration.
When you have found a church that has eucharistic adoration, go there for a short time. Ask God to increase your faith. He knows you and wants to draw you into a relationship with him. His Holy Spirit, dwelling in you, will draw you to him. But contrary to the world’s way, his voice is a “small, still” one. He does not choose to compete with all the loud voices around you. His presence will bring peace and hope and insight into your daily activities and concerns if you give him time. This is Jesus, your beloved Lord and savior. He wants a relationship with you. Pope John Paul II called this “radiation therapy” for our lives.
Let his truth, his love become the bedrock of your daily life. In a sense, go out from him to your work, your other responsibilities, and then return to him in your heart. Share with him what troubles you, what frightens you, what you hope for. Ask him to show you over the coming months, what he wants of you and desires for you. Your values, your priorities may change as God speaks to your heart through his Word and through your time spent before his face in the Eucharist. When you truly let the Lord reveal himself to you and you to him through adoration, your life will take on new dimensions and new purpose.
Once your relationship is established and your faith begins to grow, priorities and values will become clearer and clearer still, then you begin to know the rest for which you long and the peace that no one will take from you.
9 things to do during eucharistic adoration
- Find a church that offers a time of prayer before the exposed Blessed Sacrament.
- Take your Bible with you when you visit.
- Genuflect before the exposed Blessed Sacrament upon entering.
- Kneel in opening prayer.
- You may choose to remain kneeling or to sit.
- Read the psalms, slowly read the beginning of one of the Gospels.
- Don’t be discouraged if you fall asleep or are distracted. Just return to acknowledging his presence and asking his help.
- Kneel in closing prayer.
- Genuflect before the exposed Blessed Sacrament before departing.
Sister Ann Shields is a renowned author and a member of the Servants of God’s Love. Questions can be addressed to Sister Ann Shields, Renewal Ministries, 230 Collingwood, Suite 240, Ann Arbor, MI 48103