READINGS for 2009-03-03
“In praying, do not babble like the pagans, who think that they will be heard because of their many words.” – Matthew 6:7
Sometimes, when I pray, I simply don’t know what to say, especially when I’m extremely sad, or angry or even happy. When those moments come, I ask God, “Lord, is it OK if I just stay here? I just want to be with You.” Then I feel the Lord smile and nod. Somehow, I know He enjoys those moments of simply being together as much as I do.
So much of our day is consumed by words and noise. Even when we are alone, we need some “ambient noise” — from TV, computer games and MP3 players. Seldom are we comfortable in silence, with simply “being.” When we pray, how I wish we could be more like people in love. They don’t need to talk to enjoy each other’s company. Just gazing into each other’s eyes is enough. No words are needed; simply being together is enough.
Our prayers do not always need to be full of words. The Lord enjoys our presence, even if we sometimes do not know what to say. He understands our silence, and listens to our hearts. He loves us in our entirety. Sometimes it’s in silence that the most important things are said and heard. Cess Cosico
Spend some time in silence when you pray today. Just enjoy being with the Lord.
Lord, let my silence be a prayer to You.
What is the most important goal of your life? If your answer is not, “God’s will for me,” then you had better reconsider as when we live outside of God’s will, we will never find the satisfaction and fulfillment for which we so deeply long. It is difficult to put our own wills to one side and take on the will of another, even if it is God’s. Jesus is the example for us to follow. Read the Gospels, especially John’s Gospel, to see how often He tells us that it is His Father’s will that is the most important consideration in His life.
10 Thus says the Lord: Just as from the heavens the rain and snow come down and do not return there till they have watered the earth, making it fertile and fruitful, giving seed to him who sows and bread to him who eats, 11 so shall my word be that goes forth from my mouth; it shall not return to me void, but shall do my will, achieving the end for which I sent it.
P S A L M
Psalm 34:4-5. 6-7. 16-17. 18-19
R: From all their distress God rescues the just.
3  Glorify the LORD with me, let us together extol his name. 4  I sought the LORD, and he answered me and delivered me from all my fears. (R) 5  Look to him that you may be radiant with joy, and your faces may not blush with shame. 6  When the poor man called out, the LORD heard, and from all his distress he saved him. (R) 15  The LORD has eyes for the just, and ears for their cry. 16  The LORD confronts the evildoers, to destroy remembrance of them from the earth. (R) 17  When the just cry out, the LORD hears them, and from all their distress he rescues them. 18  The LORD is close to the brokenhearted; and those who are crushed in spirit he saves. (R)
G O S P E L
Prayer is not all about the words we speak. Prayer should be an encounter with the Living God. Anything less than this should not satisfy us. I know for sure that God wants to encounter us in prayer at any time in our lives. The question that remains unanswered is, to what degree do we desire to encounter God? What are we willing to do to facilitate and nourish our spiritual lives through prayer? Are we willing to prioritize our day so that prayer is not short-changed?
7 Jesus said to his disciples: “In praying, do not babble like the pagans, who think that they will be heard because of their many words. 8 Do not be like them. Your Father knows what you need before you ask him. 9 “This is how you are to pray: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, 10 your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as in heaven. 11 Give us today our daily bread; 12 and forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors; 13 and do not subject us to the final test, but deliver us from the evil one. 14 If you forgive others their transgressions, your heavenly Father will forgive you. 15 But if you do not forgive others, neither will your Father forgive your transgressions.”
think: Prayer is not all about the words we speak. Prayer should be an encounter with the Living God.
God’s special verse/thought for me today________________
T O D A Y ’ S BLESSING LIST
Thank You Lord for: ____________________________________
READ THE BIBLE IN ONE YEAR Psalm 24-28
The model of Prayer
Perhaps the most popular prayer that there is in the Christian world is the Lord’s Prayer. Almost everyone, from little children playing in the streets to old women selling in the market, knows the Lord’s Prayer. Jesus taught His disciples this prayer when they saw Him praying and asked Him, “Master, teach us how to pray.”
Jesus’ life was a life of prayer. Prayer should be brief because it is for our good, not for the good of God since He already knows what we need. The Lord’s Prayer is a simple prayer and despite its brevity, one of the Fathers of the Church called the Lord’s Prayer “truly a summary of the whole Gospel” — the expression of our chief beliefs that serve as an “Identification Prayer,” like a distinctive badge that bind believers together.
When Jesus gave to His disciples the Lord’s Prayer, He intended to give it to them not as the only prayer but rather as the model of prayer. It is the model prayer since we will be able to see in it the four elements of prayer that we have been taught of, which Catholic tradition remembers as the ACTS (Adoration, Contrition, Thanksgiving and Supplication). In it, we ask not only for the things we can rightly desire, but also in the sequence that they should be desired. Speaking with God is an intensely personal event.
In this season of Lent, let us never forget to call on God our Father as Jesus had taught us. We have a right to call God our Father if we treat other people as our brothers and sisters, especially those who are closest to us and those who are most in need. Now is a good time to improve our prayer life and our relationship with God as we observe the season of Lent.
Fr. Joel O. Jason
Do I treat other people as my brothers and sisters? Have I lived out the words that I always say whenever I recite the Lord’s Prayer?
Heavenly Father, teach me to pray. May You always be with me and guide me as I live out this journey of life. May I truly understand the words that Your son Jesus Christ had taught us and to live out the words that I utter as I recite the Lord’s Prayer.
Blessed Katherine Drexel, pray for us.
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