Written by: Patricia Everaert
From the depth of my nothingness, I prostrate myself before Thee, O Most Sacred, Divine and Adorable Heart of Jesus, to pay Thee all the homage of love, and adoration in my powers. (Prayer before the Blessed Sacrament).
Moses’ intimacy with God
“As Moses entered the tent, the column of cloud would come down and stand at the entrance of the tent, while the Lord spoke with Moses. Whenever Moses went out to the tent, the people would rise and worship at the entrance of their own tents. […] The Lord used to speak to Moses face to face, as one man speaks to another.” (Gen. 33:9-11)
When Moses enters the meeting tent, the cloud of the Lord’s Presence descends upon it. Moses sees God face to face. “Face to face” is a phrase we use all the time to indicate closeness. But don’t let your familiarity with the words lull you into disregarding what they are telling us: Moses was in the presence of God. The Lord was right there, in the tent, with Moses. So close, so intimate, in fact, that the face of Moses shone so brightly the people could not bear to look at him.
Our intimacy with God
The yearning for intimacy with God is natural to us. It’s like our belly button, which is a physical manifestation of our beginnings within our mother, that yearning we have for God is a spiritual manifestation of the fact we belong with Him.
We need that intimacy with God in order to foster relationship with Him. In any love relationship, the couple must know each other. They must have access to each other, spend time together, reveal themselves to the other. A couple that see each other rarely, seldom speak, and never share the heart of who they are with each other are acquaintances, not lovers.
I believe God’s yearning for us is even stronger, for He is nothing but love, and that love created us. He knows us more deeply than it is possible for another human being to know us. When our relationship with Him was severed by sin, God couldn’t help but repair and deepen it with the gift of His Son, Jesus. It is through Christ that our longing for God is answered.
Fostering that intimacy with God requires spending time with Him, giving Him due praise and honour in prayer. The Catechism encourages us to have a sacred space set aside for prayer. I’ve been in homes that have a little prayer corner with the Bible and a few icons, and I’ve seen entire rooms transformed and given over to prayer. The important element is that you make frequent use of it! The point is not to hang sacred images on the wall and call it done; the point is that being in our prayer corner we are able to focus on our Beloved and give Him the best of ourselves in that moment.
Making use of technology to bring Christ to all people, there are websites that stream live webcams of the Blessed Sacrament. While Jesus may not necessarily be physically present to us viewing Him online, it may be a useful tool while praying the rosary or the liturgy of the hours, or for the home-bound.
The above two methods of spending time with God are good – even very good. But nothing can equal entering the actual meeting tent – the adoration chapel. The meeting tent is without the distractions of home. All you have to contend with is your own mind and will.
What a blessing for us that we have Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament! When we go to the adoration chapel, we are entering the meeting tent, and the Lord is there waiting to meet us face to face; He is really and truly Present. And in meeting the Lord face to face, we, like Moses, are also transformed.
“To visit the Blessed Sacrament is … proof of gratitude, an expression of love, and a duty of adoration toward Christ our Lord. (Paul VI)” CCC1418
A priest once described the adoration chapel as the engine room of the parish. It was the prayers offered there that fueled the people and activities and vocations within our community
“The Church and the world have a great need for Eucharistic worship. Jesus awaits us in this sacrament of love. Let us not refuse the time to go to meet Him in adoration, in contemplation full of faith, and open to making amends for the serious offenses and crimes of the world. Let our adoration never cease.” (CCC 1380)
Let our adoration never cease.
Recommended from Catholic Chapter House:
Visits to the Blessed Sacrament and the Blessed Virgin Mary by St. Alphonsus Ligouri
Jesus, Prayer, by Catholic Chapter House.