Years later, when my husband accepted an out-of-state job transfer, we had a decision to make about where to purchase a home. While visiting this new state, we frequented a parish that offered Eucharistic Adoration on Thursdays. Before the move, I would to fly there on Thursdays to meet my husband who was already working in the new locale. We'd spend all day with the realtors, then stop off at the local Catholic church to pray before the Blessed Sacrament. The Gaze was there, too. That church became our new home parish. That was many years ago. Since that time, enough people in the parish have invested their lives in prayer so that Eucharistic Adoration isn't just on Thursdays, but seven days a week now.

So I do my weekly hour. And I know He is waiting for me. I even feel a little guilty when my family obligations take me away for a week, or if I'm there with a distracted mind. But He understands.

I pray at other times, at home, in the car, with family and friends, and when I journal. I pray through my day and at Mass. However, there's something special about having that weekly private "appointment" with Jesus. To pray, to listen, to gaze.

In 2004, I was fortunate to pray before the Blessed Sacrament in Assisi, Italy, home to St. Francis and St. Clare and the Basilicas that were built to honor them. St. Francis has long been one of my spiritual heroes. I knew much less about St. Clare, but was drawn to know more about her when I returned home. I found something she wrote in her Second Letter to St. Agnes that has stayed with me, and taught me how to respond to the Gaze:

Gaze upon Him,
Consider Him,
Contemplate Him,
As you desire to imitate Him.

This was originally posted in 2005 at Catholic Exchange, and is re-published with the author's permission.