“Filled with the Holy Spirit, Jesus was led by the Spirit.”
Marked with ashes, many of us began our 40 day Lenten journey, not into a physical desert like Jesus but into a more intentional and focused confrontation with Satan who wants to fill us with lies and all that is not of God.
Jesus’ being led by the Spirit is integral to his mission which is to conquer the devil on his own turf. Jesus goes to claim back the world from the dominion of Satan by overcoming the power of temptation and teaching us how to do so in the process.
Throughout Luke’s gospel, we encounter various scenes which portray the efforts of Satan to retain control of the world and Jesus’ steadfast battle against the actions and effects of evil.
Jesus robs the devil of his power one temptation at a time. Our Lord accomplishes this victory by NOT exercising power the way Satan wants him to, BUT by obediently and faithfully following the Father’s plan for humanity.
Specifically, Jesus refuses to use his power over nature to feed his appetites, to use his power over others for the sake of momentary glory, or to manipulate God’s promises for his own survival.
Jesus was filled with the Holy Spirit and hence, knew who he was at his deepest core, the beloved Son of the Father.
What are we filled with? As I look at my life, I know that this Lent I have to confront some of the ways that my thoughts, actions, attitudes, and daily life are filled with temptations to be less, far less than who I am created to be.
Oh, the devil is so sneaky, so manipulative, twisting what is good into self- serving, self-centered and selfish ways of being.
Do we give in to gossip because we want to feel better about ourselves and not confront our own inadequacies.
Do we complain because we don’t get our way?
Are we filled with a sense of entitlement that somehow we should get preferential treatment?
Are we filled with so much busyness that we have little time left for our most important relationships with our spouse, children and most of all, God?
Are our lives fill with idols such as how we look, how we dress, how much money we make, where we live, who our friends are, what kind of vacations we take, how successful our children are in premier sports or dance or popularity?
We could continue this examination for pages, but I would rather focus us on one concrete way that our lives can be more and more filled with the Holy Spirit so as to be able to confront the daily evils, lies and temptations of Satan to be less than beloved daughters and sons of God, to deny the call to be the best version of ourselves and to be faithful and joyful missionary disciples of Jesus Christ.
This bulwark against Satan is the precious gift of Eucharistic Adoration, time spent in prayer before the Blessed Sacrament.
We are so very blessed to have perpetual, 24/7 availability of Eucharistic Adoration. Since Lent of 2003, parishioners have kept vigil holding in prayer their loved ones, the needs of the parish and the concerns of the world. We are one of the few parishes in the archdiocese to have perpetual adoration.
It is no wonder then, that we are a vibrant parish community in the midst of so many challenges that face us. It is the faithfulness of so many of us praying and interceding before the face of Jesus that has opened the heart of so many to be filled with the Holy Spirit, like Jesus himself.
Let’s listen now to a few of our fellow parishioners about what Eucharistic Adoration means to them.
I invite you to prayerfully consider making a commitment to an hour of Eucharistic Adoration beginning this Lent for the coming year.
This commitment can begin slowly by taking 15 or 20 minutes each week of Lent and then allowing it to flower into an hour beginning at Easter.
This commitment can be with your spouse and with your children.
This commitment can be with your Small Faith sharing group, Bible study group, mom’s group or men’s group or any group of individuals in or outside of the parish, Sharon in our together where one person weekly.
This commitment can be a source of grace and strength, of peace and hope in times of transition.
During adoration you can simply sit in silence, or pray the rosary, pray with the Scriptures, pray the prayers on the parish app, intercede and pray for the needs of others and yes, even on occasion, fall asleep and rest in the Lord Jesus.
Ultimately, don’t we all desire a life filled with deep love, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control, the fruits of the Holy Spirit? I know I do, especially when life seems so difficult or overwhelming and when I fail and sin so miserably.
It is then more than ever that I need Eucharistic adoration. I need to come to Jesus and to experience his longing to be with me, his deep desire to fill me to overflowing.
Please pray about this and then commit to Eucharistic Adoration. We need more committed adorers.
You can go to our website, scroll down to the adoration section and then click on “weekly” to see the times that are available with no or only one scheduled adorer. This may help your discernment to say yes to be with Jesus.