O Come, Let Us Adore Him

If you’re a Christian, you can’t help but imagine what it will be like to finally be in the presence of Jesus. We think of it as a wonderful, overwhelming moment of love when all our troubles end and we gaze upon our Savior. Even more overwhelming to imagine is that He will also be gazing upon us, looking into our eyes and our hearts with the Love that only He can impart. There will never be a more perfect love than what we see in His eyes. Surely that will be a glorious day.  

The thing is, you don’t have to wait until heaven to gaze upon Jesus. In my parish, we have Adoration of the Most Blessed Sacrament. What’s that? Let’s look at the words Jesus used at the Last Supper when He instituted the Holy Eucharist. “He took a loaf of bread, and when He had given thanks, He broke it, and gave it to them saying, “This is My Body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of Me.” And He did the same with the cup after supper saying, “This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in My Blood”(Luke 22: 19-20). If we believe the words of Jesus as the Gospels record them, then we know the bread and wine truly become His Body and Blood. This is our Holy Communion at every Mass. Some of HIs Body is reserved in the Tabernacle near the altar. This Presence of Christ remains in every Catholic Church around the world. In Adoration, the Body is placed in a vessel called a monstrance and placed on the altar. We can come into the church and pray in the presence of Jesus Christ. 

Let me tell you about my own experience. The first time I went to Adoration was way back in the ’80’s. I was a fairly new Catholic and really had no idea what it was all about, but I went anyway. There were a couple of other people in the church at the time, silently praying. I kneeled down, looked at the Blessed Sacrament on the altar and still had no idea what to do. So I prayed. I read the hymnal. I made a grocery list in my head. It took many visits to Adoration for it to sink into my hard head and heart that the Lord Himself was there in the room with me, sharing His time with me, waiting for me to recognize Him, hidden in the appearance of bread on the altar.  

That began a love affair with Adoration. How could it not? One famous description of what this devotion “feels” like is that you are looking at Jesus and He is looking at you. It really is that heavenly moment that most of us try to imagine, when we are together with our Lord. Sometimes I pray, or read Scripture, or say a Rosary, but most of the time I’m just there with Him, sharing an hour in His presence. Maybe it sounds boring, but it isn’t. When I’m there with Him, I don’t always need words at all. I usually stay an hour or so, but sometimes it feels like five minutes. And yes, I have fallen asleep on occasion. Just like the Apostles who couldn’t stay awake with Him in the garden. In Adoration, it’s not so much about what I do, but just that I’m there. I ask Him to change my heart in that old Catholic prayer: make my heart like Yours, dear Jesus. Take away anything in me that isn’t You.  

Adoration isn’t magic—it’s worship. Because Jesus is truly present in the Eucharist on the altar. Our churches should be filled to the rafter. They surely would be if we were giving away hundred dollar bills. Yet many pass by the Creator of the universe, searching for whatever they think will make them happy. Spoiler: nothing else will. I invite anyone to open the church door and come inside. Come and see the Lord. Come spend a few minutes in the presence of our Savior. He’s waiting for you there in the Eucharist. He offers you peace and acceptance. In a world that’s full of conflict and pain, He is love and healing. Come, let us adore Him.  

How many of you would say: I should like to see His face, His garments, His shoes. You do see Him, you touch Him, you eat Him. He gives Himself to you not only that you may see Him, but also to be your food and nourishment.”

      —St. John Chrysostom (349-407 AD)

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. SR
    Sep 10, 2017 @ 20:20:47

    I always say in one hour with Jesus in Adoration, He can reveal and solve more for me, then I can in a month! God Bless, SR

    Reply

  2. Brian H. Gill
    Sep 11, 2017 @ 21:57:34

    I like your hundred-dollar-giveaway comparison. Also the grocery lists.

    My hour a week at Adoration no longer feels like ‘doing nothing,’ but I can’t claim any great emotional experience associated with it. That’s hardly surprising, given the sort of person I am. Probably a good thing, too, since I have little reason to trust my emotions.

    I see Adoration as a blessing – also good practice, among other things. Getting the full experience? That, I’m quite willing to defer until I’m actually – God willing – with our Lord.

    Reply

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