“Couldst thou not watch one hour? Watch ye, and pray that you enter not into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak” (Mark 14: 37-38).
We hear these words often. We hear or see them so much, in fact, that we often give very little thought to them. They were spoken by Christ to some of the apostles in the Garden of Gethsemane, only a short time before He was betrayed by Judas Iscariot. These words were not meant for the apostles alone; they were meant for us as well. Everyday in Catholic Churches around the world, Our Lord is present in the exhibition of the Blessed Sacrament. He is there on our altars waiting for us, calling to us.
“Will you not watch one hour?”
What a great gift it is to have the King of Creation on our altars! You would think that the churches would be full, packed so tightly that it would be hard to move. Yet this, sadly, is not the case. Jesus is often alone, left to Himself in an empty church that should be filled with adorers. How sad! In times of trial and tribulations, even in times of peace and joy, we should sit and visit with Him who sacrificed Himself for us. “Come all ye that labor and are burdened, and I will refresh you” (Matthew 11:28).
Jesus is our God, our Savior, but He is also our Friend, our Good Shepherd. We all like to be around friends; it makes us feel safe and loved to be around people we know and share memories with them. We will never have a better friend than Our Lord. He brought us into existence, He walks beside us as we journey through life, and He sits upon our altars with love and care for us, His children. Father Michael Mueller sums this up well in his book, The Blessed Eucharist, Our Greatest Treasure. He writes:
“But where, I ask, can you find a better, a more faithful, or a more liberal friend than Jesus Christ in the Blessed Sacrament–one who more sincerely wishes you well, one who consults more your advantage and happiness, one who grants your petitions with greater readiness and pleasure? Ought you not, then, to feel drawn to go after your King and best Friend in order to show your gratitude to Him?”Father Michael Mueller
Why are we not with Him who created us? Our Lord sits in the Blessed Sacrament wishing to hear and grant our prayers if only we take the time to keep Him company. The priest says also, “Ought we not to look upon it as a great grace and favor to be invited into His presence? Surely, we ought to find our delight in His company since He is delighted to be in ours.” The time spent in the presence of Our Lord is precious. The King of Heaven and earth sits on our altars and waits for us to come to him as a father waits for his child’s first steps to carry him into his arms.
Let us run to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament! With humble affection and attention, let us sit and keep company with our King for at least an hour.
The Divine Praises
Blessed be God. Blessed be His Holy Name. Blessed be Jesus Christ, true God and true man. Blessed be the Name of Jesus. Blessed be His Most Sacred Heart. Blessed be His Most Precious Blood. Blessed be Jesus in the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar. Blessed be the Holy Ghost, the Paraclete. Blessed be the great Mother of God, Mary most holy. Blessed be her Holy and Immaculate Conception. Blessed be her Glorious Assumption. Blessed be the name of Mary, Virgin and Mother. Blessed be Saint Joseph, her most chaste spouse. Blessed be God in His angels and in His saints.
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 until the end of time. Amen.
The Holy Bible. Douay-Rheims Version, Loreto Publication, 1941.
Mueller, Michael, The Blessed Eucharist, Our Greatest Treasure. Rockford, Illinois, Tan Books and Publishers, 1994.