Woken from a dream by my alarm clock at 4:30 on a Tuesday morning, I groggily swung one leg over the side of the bed, and then the other. I wondered into the bathroom with my eyes still half shut, brushed my teeth, and slowly made my way to the garage. I pulled out of the garage, minivan headlights on, and drove the 1.6 miles down a practically deserted road over to a practically deserted parking lot at my parish.
As I walked from the van to the large red door through the cold early-morning air, punched in the code and took my first steps in, I couldn’t help but think to myself, “Man, I really wish I was still under the covers in my nice comfy bed right now.” Stepping into the chapel, dipping my hand in holy water and heading over to my usual old worn-out kneeler, however, reminded me of why I’ve been doing this.
As I gazed up at the Eucharistic presence of Jesus, on display in a brilliant and blindly beautiful monstrance, a sense of overwhelming peace and comfort came flooding back into my heart.
After coming back from a week-long trip to Boston where my early morning run routing was thrown all out of whack, I felt a tug at my heart that I couldn’t quite put my finger on, and decided I needed to make a choice: Did I want to continue my early-morning runs, getting 4 miles under my belt before the kids woke up? Or was I being pulled toward something radically different?
I decided to give something different a try.
Instead of lacing up my Saucony running shoes before sunrise, I hopped in the van and drove over to our Perpetual Adoration chapel. I went for five straight days before a weekend away interrupted my routine. After returning home from that time away, I went again … and didn’t stop.
Kneeling before the Blessed Sacrament, especially during this tumultuous time in our Church, has brought me peace, hope, and a renewed determination to grow in holiness.
That’s not to say that it’s been some sort of magic cure: far from it. If we all lined up in order of our sin, I’d still sheepishly walk to the front of the line. But the hope that comes from starting every day in front of Our Lord’s true presence is something I can’t really put into words.
For that hour, the world seems at peace, my family feels like it’s on the right track, and I feel the truth of our Catholic faith and Our Lord Jesus Christ more than at any other moment throughout the day.
If you have an Adoration chapel near your home, I encourage you to get over there and ask the Lord to show you where He wants to lead you. Perhaps it’s just right back to that chapel day after day after day.
Copyright 2018 Tommy Tighe