Rachel loves movies, especially those epic movies in which our heroes lay down their lives so that others might live: Harry Potter, The Lord of the Rings, The Hunger Games, and even Inside Out (from which she showed us an awesome clip).
In John 3:16 we read:
“God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life.”
This powerful verse proclaims the most heroic story ever told; and though we never tire of seeing other versions of heroic self-sacrifice on the big screen, sometimes the most powerful version of all – that of God’s love revealed on the Cross – can lose its impact. Maybe because we’ve heard the story so many times, it seems like it’s not that big of a deal and we can learn nothing new about it. But God always wants to teach us more, and He is always willing to do something new within each one of us if we let Him.
Everyone is in a different place. Some of us have been through unbearable pain and significant losses, and some of us haven’t. But if we live our lives long enough, we will experience our own version of the Cross. Jesus promised that, “In the world you will find trouble” and “That where I am, you will also be.” So we will go through pain, as He did.
When Rachel was in high school and when she attended these conferences back in the day, she hadn’t experienced too much pain; she was in a pretty good place. Her most powerful personal experience of the Cross happened a little over three years ago when she and her husband suffered the excruciating pain of a miscarriage. During that time, for quite a long time, she was with Jesus at the Cross – in all of the struggles and emotions that He must have felt.
What Rachel has learned – and what she wants us all to remember – is that any and all suffering can be redemptive and an opportunity for grace. Suffering and pain can often push us into His wide open arms.
“Nothing is wasted in the Kingdom if we put it in His hands. He works all things for our good.”
Suffering is a moment in time, but victory lasts forever. In the world we will have trouble, but Jesus has overcome the world.
There is nowhere that He won’t go to be with us where we are, including becoming present in a host. Not only here during Adoration, but in our parishes back home, and every time we receive Him in the Eucharist.
He makes himself small, just to show us how big He really is.
We get a taste of Heaven every single time He draws near.
He is ours, and we are His.