Last weekend I had the privilege of speaking to the 8th grade girls at St. Mark Catholic Church who were preparing for their upcoming Confirmation. It was even more of a blessing to get to speak in front of Jesus in the sacrament of the Eucharist at adoration. God was very perceptibly “in the house” and I pray that He moves their hearts and helps His daughters recognize the great love He has for all of us. To that end, I decided to write them a letter:
Dear Sister in Christ,
I remember when I was in 8th grade. I loved hanging out with my friends, just like you. I liked boys, just like you. I loved going to concerts and dancing around my room to the latest hit, just like you. Also, just like you, I went on this same retreat at this exact retreat center. My cabin was cabin number five and I slept in the same creaky bunk beds, just like you. Meg was my small group leader and she was one of the most on fire women I had ever met for this one guy named Jesus. She talked a lot about this Jesus who she said was crazy in love with me. I wanted to know more.
Sister, the world tells us girls so many lies about what to hope in, who we are and where to find love but our God tells us something completely different.
Christ is the one who tells us who we are! We are so lucky to have Jesus, present, right here in the Eucharist, to remind us how much we are loved and adored by Him. He is the one I want to have tell me that I am loved, I am adored, I am beautiful, and that I am His daughter.
Let God embrace you tonight at adoration; let Him hold you. He doesn’t love you because of what you have or haven’t done; no, he loves you because you are His. You are His beloved, beautiful daughter. If no one has told you lately that you are beautiful, let me remind you that you’re beautiful because God made you His.
Dear sister, we are not just adoring God tonight, but as crazy as it sounds, God is adoring YOU. He’s so happy that you are here with Him.
The best day of my life was four years ago when I married my husband Rocco. On that perfect Saturday afternoon at St. Mark I was going to become the wife of the greatest man I’ve ever met. When i rounded the corner in the back of the church to walk down to my future husband, all i could see was him standing there waiting for me. When he first saw me walking down to him, I’ve never seen someone happier in my life. He was there, at the end of the aisle, beaming from ear to ear, barely able to hold in his excitement, tears rolling down his face because he was seeing his bride for the first time, on her way to him, forever.
Isn’t that how we all want to be loved and adored? How Rocco looked at me on our wedding day is exactly how I picture God is looking at you right now. He’s smiling from ear to ear, tears of joy streaming down his face because of how beautiful you are. He’s so proud of you, His daughter. Jesus, our groom, is adoring you, his most beautiful bride.
So how could we not come with hearts full of joy to Him? Be bold. Come up close to Christ. Come, sit or kneel in front of him at adoration. Allow yourself to be adored by Him. Come near to Him.
You and I are both searching for love and the great news about the Gospel is that we don’t have to search any further than right here. We have found it! Jesus is the love we have been looking for! God is telling you that YOU. ARE. BEAUTIFUL. You are His. This changes everything! When we really understand that we have the God of the universe with us, here in this room and He is adoring you, and that you are His beautiful daughter, we live differently. His love changes everything!
Rest easy tonight, sister, because you know, finally, WHO you are and WHOSE you are… you are the beloved daughter of the King!
I’m praying for you…
Your Sister in Christ, Valerie