Jesus Desires You
A REFLECTION FROM AWAKENING #68
By Jill Engel
Like many young people who make the Awakening Retreat, I was hesitant. To be honest, I really just signed up to appease my friends and so they would stop bugging me about it. It’s really hard to go in without expectations when you hear others endlessly talk about how Awakening has changed their lives. And being the stubborn individual that I am, I was convinced it was just hype and the weekend was going to come and go and I’d leave the same person as I had arrived. Needless to say, I was wrong. Which seems to be a recurring theme in my relationship with my faith.
The most striking part of this weekend was how hard it hit me, and how everything I needed to hear and to feel flooded me when I sat in silence with the Lord. Before this weekend, I never really understood Adoration. It was always just me twiddling my thumbs and hoping to hear something, even though I was keeping my heart and my ears closed. Other people always made it look so easy, and I couldn’t help but feel that I was doing it wrong. As I knelt there in the church, for the first time in my life, I felt a peace and a calming energy come over me and finally I understood the beauty of Adoration. It isn’t about yelling at God for your problems or “doing it right”, it’s just a matter of being there and being patient. When you feel the presence of Him in the Eucharist, suddenly, those earthly problems seem less significant to you.
This weekend taught me that it’s okay to let down your walls and that guarding your heart is futile with the Lord, because He knows exactly what is weighing on it. I want to thank the Newman Center for offering an unforgettable weekend that will stay with me for a lifetime, and for helping me cultivate fruitful relationships through Christ.
And to those friends, who pushed me to get here, I love you and I forgive you for the nagging. I still have such a long way to go on my faith journey, but I truly believe that this retreat has put me on a path to move forward in that journey.
I’ll leave you with a quote on Adoration spoken by Jesus to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque,
“I have a burning thirst to be honored by men in the Blessed Sacrament.”
He desires us to be there with Him and I challenge myself, and all of you, to get there.