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With Eyes Wide Open -- Encountering the Lord in Adoration [Catholic Caucus] ^ | June 2012 | WAU staff

Posted on 06/10/2012 2:00:47 PM PDT by Salvation

With Eyes Wide Open

Encountering the Lord in Adoration

With Eyes Wide Open

Which of the following people actually encountered Jesus when they came to their church and sat before the Blessed Sacrament in adoration?

The young boy who stopped in on his way home from school just to say, “Hi,” to Jesus. The man who slipped into the back of the church and repented over and over again for the way he had sinned against the Lord. The teenager who said the Our Father, the Hail Mary, and the Glory Be three times. The woman who said four rosaries, one for each of the twenty mysteries. The married couple who spent a full hour gazing at Jesus together. The priest who did nothing but ask Jesus for guidance and wisdom as he tried to lead his parish.

If you answered all of the above, then you’re right. Any time that we go out of our way to visit Jesus, we will be blessed. Of course, not all of these kinds of visits are the same, and they don’t all yield the same results. After all, we’re talking about a relationship here, and in any relationship there are degrees of intimacy.

If we simply sit before the Lord for an hour, we will be blessed. We will feel good about what we have done, and we will leave our time with him strengthened. Yet this approach to adoration has its limits. By preparing ourselves to meet the Lord and by having some knowledge of how the Holy Spirit works, we can increase our chances of receiving more from the Lord and of being changed more into his likeness. So let’s look at a few ways we can approach adoration to see how the Spirit works in each of them.

Fix Your Eyes on Jesus.

“Look to Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of our faith, who for the sake of the joy that was set before him endured the cross, disregarding its shame, and has taken his seat at the right hand of the throne of God” (Hebrews 12:2).

The idea of fixing our eyes on Jesus is so simple that even a young child can understand it. As you kneel or sit before the Lord, call to mind your favorite images of Jesus. Some like to see him with his Blessed Mother, perhaps in their home at Nazareth or at the wedding feast of Cana. Others enjoy seeing Jesus at the Transfiguration, radiant with God’s glory as he talks with Moses and Elijah.

Still others prefer to see him feeding the five thousand or healing the hemorrhaging woman. Many people hold two images of Jesus dear to their hearts: the crucified Christ and the risen Lord seated at the right hand of his Father in glory.

When we begin to fix our eyes on one of these images and focus our attention on Jesus in the Sacrament, a couple of things begin to happen. First, the distractions of normal life, with all of its responsibilities, problems, and demands, fade away. Second, we begin to feel as if we have entered into heaven. We feel as if we too are “seated” with Jesus “in the heavenly places” (Ephesians 2:6). We get a taste of what it will be like when there will be no more suffering or pain, when we will be reunited with all of our loved ones, and when every hope and dream of ours will finally be fulfilled.

Listening for His Voice.

“I pray that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation as you come to know him.” (Ephesians 1:17)

As we fix our eyes on Jesus in this way, something marvelous begins to happen. The Holy Spirit begins to open our minds and fill us with spiritual wisdom and understanding (Colossians 1:9). We begin to grasp more about Jesus: what he did for us, how much he loves us, how merciful he is, and how much he rejoices with us and suffers with us.

Words from Scripture that previously had little or no meaning begin to come alive. They enlighten our minds and urge us to be holy. They convince us that we have God’s strength to help us and to make us more fruitful for Jesus.

Then comes the best part. Whatever we learn and understand moves us to love Jesus more. When we grasp who he is and what he has done for us, our only response is to say, “Jesus, I love you.” We fall in love with him all over again, and his love in turn calms our fears, heals our wounds, and energizes us with hope and confidence. Some who find this intimacy have even felt Jesus putting his arms around them and holding them close to his heart.

Overcoming the World.

“Little children, you are from God, and have conquered them; for the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.” (1 John 4:4)

Another work of the Holy Spirit that frequently occurs as we adore Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament is directed toward the obstacles that block our way to God. St. Paul calls these obstacles “strongholds” that are raised up “against the knowledge of God” (2 Corinthians 10:4-5).

As we kneel before the Lord, we begin to hear the Holy Spirit gently tell us that perfection cannot be united with imperfection. He tells us that in Christ we have been made holy, and that we should now live as the holy man or woman he has made us to be. Suddenly, we find God’s mercy and power working in us, helping us to take these strongholds captive and demolish them one by one, over time. We find God’s grace working in us, convincing us that we can overcome everything that separates us from him.

As we are moved to repentance and confession, something inside of us—yes, it is the Holy Spirit—infuses us with a divine conviction and power. We leave our time of adoration convinced that we can stop sinning, and we find a new and greater ability to say “no” to the temptations that assail us in the course of our day.

Building the Kingdom of God.

“I pray that you may lead lives worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, as you bear fruit in every good work and as you grow in the knowledge of God.” (Colossians 1:10)

Like every parent, our heavenly Father has the perfect happiness of every human being in the forefront of his mind. Today, as happy as he is that we have come and spent time in Jesus’ presence, he also gives us a taste of his sadness. If we look at Jesus long enough and closely enough, we can see him weeping over all the pain and suffering in the world. We can see him mourning over all the sin. We can see him weeping over those who reject him or who have never heard of him.

The pain that we see in the broken heart of Jesus moves us to take up his call. Adoration before Jesus moves us to say: “Here am I; send me” (Isaiah 6:8). It convinces us that our life with Jesus is about personal holiness and about being his light to everyone we meet.

The Holy Spirit wants to use our time of adoration to open our eyes to the needs of the poor, to the despair of the uneducated, to the loneliness of the unevangelized, and to the suffering and fears of the ill, the forgotten, and the homeless. The Spirit wants us to love Jesus so much that we feel compelled to serve him.

With Opened Eyes.

To those who have never sat before the Lord in this way, eucharistic adoration can seem like a waste of time. And yet to those who have tasted the goodness of the Lord, adoration has the power to move us closer to Jesus.

Think about Jesus’ encounter with the Samaritan woman described in John 4. At the very beginning of their conversation, Jesus told her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is that is saying to you, ‘Give me a drink,’ you would have asked him, and he would have given you living water” (John 4:10). In a similar manner, eucharistic adoration is not about our giving Jesus a drink by giving up our time to be with him as much as it is about our coming to Jesus and asking him for a drink. It’s about presenting our needs to the Lord and asking him to fill us up with heavenly grace and heavenly power and heavenly wisdom. It’s about receiving all that we need to live in him and for him in this world.

The more we fix our eyes on Jesus, the more we will appreciate how much he goes out of his way to reach us. When we come and meet him in adoration, he shows us—just as he showed the Samaritan woman—that he wants to be our Lord, our Savior, and our friend. As our eyes are opened, we will take his advice and ask him for a drink of his living water. And we will never be the same again.

TOPICS: Catholic; Prayer
KEYWORDS: adoration; catholic; eucharist
We are called to love, honor and adore Christ.
1 posted on 06/10/2012 2:00:57 PM PDT by Salvation
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To: nickcarraway; NYer; ELS; Pyro7480; livius; ArrogantBustard; Catholicguy; RobbyS; marshmallow; ...

Adoration Ping!

2 posted on 06/10/2012 2:04:02 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

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3 posted on 06/10/2012 2:14:35 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation

The one that sticks in my mind the most vividly is that guy that wouldn’t even look but asked, “Have mercy on me, a sinner”

4 posted on 06/10/2012 2:29:06 PM PDT by knarf (I say things that are true ... I have no proof ... but they're true)
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To: Salvation

Eyes wide open is the hard part for me. On Saturday nights after a full day of chores, I have to fight to stay awake. Frequently I lose. Sorry, Lord.

5 posted on 06/10/2012 3:42:34 PM PDT by Romulus (The Traditional Latin Mass is the real Youth Mass)
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To: Romulus

I bet the Lord appreciates you being there anyway! I’ve seen one man kneel down, stand up, sit down and repeat the exercises to stay away during his hour.

6 posted on 06/10/2012 3:51:56 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Romulus

Yeah, about 5 years ago I tried doing this, but had to give up my scheduled adoration duty late on Saturday nights due to sheer incompetence and fatigue. When I was really tired and distracted, I’d get there and not remember my entry code to the chapel, or where in my purse it was written down, in case I forgot it.

Also, I had the wrong frame of mind. I thought I was there so that Jesus wouldn’t be left by Himself. I was doing Jesus a favor. (?!) The people in the adoration ministry tried to tell me that I had it backwards in terms of who was benefiting from this. I was too tired to think it through. Not meant to be my calling at that time of my life, I guess.

However, my husband has done 5:00 a.m. on Tuesday for years. He is truly a faithful friend of Jesus.

7 posted on 06/10/2012 4:13:19 PM PDT by married21 (As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.)
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To: Romulus
I know exactly what you mean. Sometimes (maybe after reading a short meditation by some spiritual writer and praying the Rosary, or something like that), my eyes start to close sleepily, no matter how much I try to resist that unwanted development.

Well, at least in one regard, that sort of makes us just like the apostles, doesn't it?   :-)

8 posted on 06/10/2012 6:12:03 PM PDT by Heart-Rest ("Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh; is anything too hard for me?" Jeremiah 32:27)
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To: Heart-Rest

It’s easy to fall asleep if you’re seated. I know the feeling—it’s warm, the light is low, there’s a soft white noise from an air filter, you’re tired. But it’s easier to stay awake if you’re on your knees rather than seated. If you’re like me, middle-aged aches and creaks will keep you awake!

9 posted on 06/10/2012 6:18:01 PM PDT by ottbmare (The OTTB Mare)
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To: ottbmare
Well, I start out that way (on my knees) every time, but I sometimes have a problem with hellacious full leg cramps (calves, thighs, etc., all at the same time), and they tend to impede the clarity and reverence of my prayers.

So, when I am later sitting there and praying and the "peace that passes understanding" overcomes me during adoration, my adoration partner usually rudely pokes me to wake me up and stop my spiritual snoring!

It doesn't happen to me every time, just occasionally. However, I do wish that I could spend at least an hour with the Lord each time, thinking sublime meditations, and praying glorious heavenly prayers, and never have to encounter the "snooze alarm".   :-)

10 posted on 06/10/2012 6:50:20 PM PDT by Heart-Rest ("Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh; is anything too hard for me?" Jeremiah 32:27)
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To: Heart-Rest

Try potassium. Works for me!

11 posted on 06/10/2012 7:15:28 PM PDT by ottbmare (The OTTB Mare)
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To: ottbmare
Well, I don't want to try to turn this into a health or medical thread, but, believe me, to address these severe full-leg cramps, I take (or have taken) many things over the years, including potassium, multiple vitamins with the B vitamins, additional separate doses of D vitamins at the suggestion of one of my doctors, bananas (also for potassium), and various other supplements and food items, and have also performed various physician-suggested specific leg exercises.

(The way I get out of those severe full-leg cramps when they occur is to take "Hyland's Leg Cramp Pills with quinine".)

I believe there must be some other medical reason I get these unusual cramps, but so far none of my doctors have ever been able to pin that down.

However, I also believe that Jesus forgave his apostles for falling asleep in the Garden, and that he will also forgive us if we unintentionally fall asleep during adoration. (At least I hope so!)

12 posted on 06/10/2012 7:43:59 PM PDT by Heart-Rest ("Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh; is anything too hard for me?" Jeremiah 32:27)
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To: Heart-Rest
I hate to derail the thread but I take Vitamin E and Apple Cider Vinegar two teaspoons in a glass of water(twice a day). I use to get the worst cramps. I have recommended over the years. Everyone came back with positive results.

Freeper Cheers!

13 posted on 06/10/2012 9:45:40 PM PDT by johngrace (I am a 1 John 4! Christian- declared at every Sunday Mass , Divine Mercy and Rosary prayers!)
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To: Salvation

So Sacred!

14 posted on 06/10/2012 10:02:05 PM PDT by johngrace (I am a 1 John 4! Christian- declared at every Sunday Mass , Divine Mercy and Rosary prayers!)
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To: johngrace

It is a very precious time to me. Unfortunately with the borken arm and broken foot this last year I wasn’t able to keep my hour. But I’m back on the schedule now!


15 posted on 06/10/2012 10:04:43 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation
16 posted on 06/10/2012 10:08:13 PM PDT by johngrace (I am a 1 John 4! Christian- declared at every Sunday Mass , Divine Mercy and Rosary prayers!)
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To: Salvation

I go too. Be still a Know!

17 posted on 06/10/2012 10:12:31 PM PDT by johngrace (I am a 1 John 4! Christian- declared at every Sunday Mass , Divine Mercy and Rosary prayers!)
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To: Salvation
"Be still, and know that I am God" (Psalm 46:10, NIV).
18 posted on 06/10/2012 10:19:45 PM PDT by johngrace (I am a 1 John 4! Christian- declared at every Sunday Mass , Divine Mercy and Rosary prayers!)
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To: Salvation

Beautiful — and very helpful.... Thank you for the ping.

19 posted on 06/11/2012 1:11:20 PM PDT by Bigg Red (Pray for our republic.)
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To: married21
I totally relate to your post. I haven't gone to adoration since my father passed away in November, but plan on going back in the near future. When I did go though, it was soooo hard for me, because my scheduled day was Sunday at three. That is the time of day I get really tired, and the peacefulness of the room adds to my fatigue. Sometimes, many times, I would go and the whole hour was spent on trying not to go to sleep. I always felt so guilty about that.
20 posted on 06/12/2012 10:34:36 PM PDT by diamond6 (Check out: and learn about the faith.)
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