By Ivonne Hernandez
“Now, it is in the Holy Eucharist that our Lord gives us the consoling assurance that He loves us personally as His friends; He allows us to rest our heart a while on His own, like His beloved Disciple; He gives us a taste, at least for a moment, of the sweetness of the heavenly manna; He fills our heart with the joy of possessing its God like Zaccheus, of possessing its Savior like Magdalen, of possessing its supreme happiness and its all like the Bride in the Canticle of Canticles.” - St. Peter Julian Eymard
Yesterday I was lying down in bed and my youngest son came over and lay his head on my shoulder. He took a deep breath and said to me, “I love this.” I said, “Me too”, and we just stayed there for a while, just being together. Precious moments! These are the moments that get etched in my memory. These moments of grace when my heart, recognizing the presence of God, can rest for a while.
St. Augustine said, “Our hearts are restless until they rest in you.” Once we have had an encounter with God, the rest of our lives are spent trying to find Him again. We get a taste of that real love, that place where we are known and loved, but then it is gone. We feel His presence in the mountains one day and we go back to the same spot looking for the same feeling, but it’s not there. We work hard to recreate a Christmas memory from our childhood when we felt truly loved, and we are disappointed when our expectations are not met. We grow tired and weary, but the longing of our hearts impels us to seek Him, and we do not give up.
God is beauty, and we can find Him in a sunset, in a beautiful work of art or in the smile of a child, and when we find Him there, our hearts can rest. God is love, and we can find Him in our spouse, in our children and in our friends, and when we find Him there, our hearts can rest. God created all these things to bring us to Himself, but these created things are passing, and so our rest is interrupted. But in the Eucharist Our Lord “allows us to rest our heart a while on His own”. Here we do not need to worry about getting attached to the means of getting to God rather than to God Himself. We will not be hurt or disappointed. Here Jesus is present to us, Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity. It is not a reflection of God, but God Himself who calls to us saying, “Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:29)
 Eymard, St Peter Julian. The Real Presence (p. 256). Veritatis Splendor Publications. Kindle Edition.
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We are Ivonne Hernandez, Rick Hernandez and Laura Worhacz, Lay Associates of the Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament, and brothers and sisters in Christ.