It was early on a Sunday morning my Sophomore year of college. I put the phone down and started walking. I went out my dorm room, down the stairs, through the double doors, and up the long isle of the chapel. My knee hit the floor before I quickly ascended three steps, landed on both knees and pressed my forehead on cold marble. I let out a sigh and looked up at the closed golden doors in front of me. A tide of thought and feeling ebbed into the recesses of my being only to flow back as a massive wave of hot tears. I was pulled to the eucharistic adoration that morning.
Some strange gravity of grace tugged at me immediately. The news on the other end of the line was my mother’s death at the sad end to the terrible unraveling of her life. She had lost her job, her home was in foreclosure, addiction and illness had left her in ruins. Our last conversation was painful and unresolved. The news utterly crushed me. Yet, in that moment in front of the Blessed Sacrament, I found myself face to face, held, and un-alone. Where else would I have gone?
When I am lost I find myself in the Eucharist. When everything else is subject to change, the hidden manna of the Blessed Sacrament is my one constant. As a teenager when things exploded at home, I went to the adoration. As a young twenty-something in the midst of tough discernment, I went to adoration. And now—on ordinary days or evenings, trying to burn away an interior fog, I go to adoration. When I’m faced with problems that I feel unable and unequipped to fix, I go to Jesus in the Eucharist.
Where Else Would I Go but to Adoration?
Since the Eucharist faces me with something too wonderful to understand, it gives me hope in the face of things too terrible to understand. There is a deep comfort in the mystery. It isn’t a rational or emotional comfort, but one that moves to the heart and center where the pain is most piercing.
Last night I found myself in front of a crowd of young teens with the task of preparing them for a time of eucharistic adoration. I remembered with great gratitude the many times in my life when Jesus’ presence in the Eucharist was my deepest comfort and my anchor. Jesus wants to be there for each and every one of us in this way. Whenever I am presenting to a group of people, whether teens or adults, many are suffering from brokenness in their families, from anxieties, heartaches, questions about identity, and a number of other unspeakable aches. My own experience is that Christ alone can comfort and heal and that he does so powerfully in the Eucharist. The best thing I can do is stand and point, “Behold, the Lamb of God.”
Are you broken, weary, searching, and aching? Let the gravity of grace draw you in. Take some time today to be face to face and un-alone before the Eucharist.
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About Colin MacIver
Colin MacIver teaches theology and has served as the religion department chair and campus ministry coordinator at St. Scholastica Academy in Covington, Louisiana. He is the author of the guide to Quick Catholic Lessons with Fr. Mike. He and his wife, Aimee, are co-authors and presenters of Theology of the Body for Teens Middle School Edition and co-authors of the Chosen Parent’s and Sponsor’s Guides.
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