Friday, April 12, 2013

Devotion for today: Jesus I believe in Your love for me

This is what we proclaim to you; what was from the beginning; what we have heard; what we have seen with our eyes. What we have looked upon and our hands have touched – we speak of the word of Life. This Life became visible; we have seen and bear witness to it, and we proclaim to you the Eternal Life that was present to the Father and became visible to us. (John 1:1-3)

John is the Apostle whom Jesus brought close to Himself on Holy Thursday night. At the Last Supper, as John reclined near the Heart of Christ, he experienced the deep, personal love of the God-Man. As he rested on the Savior’s breast, he drank from the springs of salvation, from the living waters of eternal love that flowed from the Heart of Christ. From that moment on, John saw himself as “the one Jesus loved”, the Beloved Apostle of the Lord. All of the writings of John are animated with the theme of the incarnation – God becoming man and dwelling among us – whom we have “heard”, “seen” and “looked upon”. The Eucharist is the continuation of Christ’s incarnation on earth. In St. John’s prologue we understand the beauty and the meaning of the Eucharist: “The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us, and we have seen His glory; the glory of an only Son coming from the Father, filled with enduring love.” John really believed that Jesus loved him. This is what Jesus wants everyone to do – to really believe that He loves us in a deep, personal, unconditional way in spite of our sins and how many times we have failed in the past. John represents each and every one of us. We are all special in His eyes, called to be holy and to be an intimate friend of Christ. Because of the Eucharist, everyone should see themselves as “the one Jesus loves” (John 20:2). You don’t have to feel His love to know it. The simple fact that the God who created the whole universe contains Himself in the small Sacred Host to be our friend and companion in life speaks more eloquently of His love than the intimate scene of St. John resting on His Heart on Holy Thursday night. Nothing is greater proof of His Love than the gift of Himself to us in the Eucharist. Like John, Jesus wants you to exclaim in appreciation: “Jesus, I believe in Your love for me”.  (Fr. Vincent Martin Lucia, Come to Me in the Blessed Sacrament, Apostolate for Perpetual Adoration).

Have you ever wondered what it would have been like to be the apostle John at the Last Supper, to be able to rest your head on Jesus’ heart and feel His unconditional love for you? I can only imagine, yet I do have a sense of it. As Fr. Lucia tells us, John really believed that Jesus loved him. He knew it because he knew Jesus so well. We can have that experience of Jesus’ love as well, when we come before Him in the Blessed Sacrament and lean upon His loving heart. Jesus is there for us, to come and get to know Him in an intimate way. People in love spend as much time with each other as possible, sometimes just gazing into each other’s eyes. They love the mere presence of each other. That is what happens when we spend time before the Blessed Sacrament. We quiet our minds, quiet our souls and open ourselves to the voice of God. He speaks softly and gently to us, and we learn to hear His voice as our visits increase. The world is shut out, and God is let in. As St. John Vianney learned from an old man who spent much time in front of the Blessed Sacrament, “Father, I look at Him, and He looks at me.” Come and find the God who created the entire universe, yet personally and intimately loves you so very, very much.

Prayer :
All praise be to You, Jesus, truly present in the most Blessed Sacrament,
The Lamb of God, the Bread of Angels, the Friend of Man, the Light of the World.
By the light of Your Eucharistic love, cast out all the darkness from my mind and heart
that I may see clearly the height and the depth of Your personal love for me.

With this light, Jesus, increase my faith, perfect my hope, that I may never give into any form of sadness or discouragement. Give me wisdom to see everything from God’s point of view, that I may walk in the light of truth and virtue, living according to the Father’s will.

In your light, Jesus, teach us to live and love in fellowship with one another. By your precious Blood, cleanse the world from all sin, especially those in most need of Your mercy.
May the Heart of Jesus, in the Most Blessed Sacrament, be praised, adored and loved, with grateful affection, at every moment, in all the tabernacles of the world, even to end of time. (Come to Me in the Blessed Sacrament, Fr. Vincent Martin Lucia, Apostolate for Perpetual Adoration)

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