Meditation is an ideal way to pray. Using God's word (Lectio Divina) allows me to hear, listen and reflect on what the Lord wants to say to me - to one of his disciples - just like He did two thousand years ago.
The best time to reflect is at the beginning of the day and for at least 15 to 30 minutes.
Prior to going to sleep, read the Mass readings for the next day and then, in the morning, reflect on the Meditation offered on this website.
I hope these daily meditations allow you to know, love and imitate the Lord in a more meaningful way.
God bless you!


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Mt 6:7-15 When You Pray

Mt 6:7-15 When You Pray

(Click here for readings)

The Lord asked his disciples, “Can you not stay awake with me for one hour?” Almost a year ago, I decided that I would. One of the greatest lights I ever received in my life was to start this daily blog – my daily meditations. The people who read it unknowingly hold me accountable to a promise I made to the Lord: “Yes, I can stay with you for an hour.”

The best time to pray is in the morning, and this is the best for me. Lately, I have had to do them later during the day and this is not the best for me. But I will not end the day without dedicating an hour a day in meditation.

I was worried that once I left the religious discipline, structure and order I was involved in for over seventeen years I would fall into the great temptation of abandoning this welcomed guest. Today, I can honestly say that I cannot function without praying upon the Gospel and doing my daily meditation. This is what we should all strive for: to feel as if there is something missing if I do not pray; to feel a great sense of loss when I do not spend time alone with the Lord. Most people cannot function during the day if they do not shower. This is how we should all feel when it comes to prayer.

When should we pray? Always, in words and in deeds. Why should we pray? Because we need to breathe, and prayer is to the soul what oxygen is to the brain and heart - essential. Breathing reminds us that we cannot escape from reality of the world. Prayer reminds us that we cannot escape the need for God. How should we pray? With honesty, humility and hard work.

Lord, teach us how to pray.

Reflection is needed in life and prayer produces reflection. Prayer yields the fruit of new ideas, higher living standards and greater ministries. It allows us to penetrate deeper into the life of Christ and the inspirations of the Holy Spirit.

If I feel as if I am not loved, it is because I do not pray. If my plans are falling apart and I along with them, then it is because I do not pray. If I give up too quickly and abandon the soul seeking desire for intimacy with the Lord, it is because I do not pray. If I am suffering from heartache, frustration, loneliness, despair, isolation and confusion, it is because I do not pray. If I am struggling with addictions, it is because I do not pray. If I feel the world is too much of a burden for me to carry upon my shoulders, it is because I do not pray.

Have no doubts, prayer is essential. The question is not really how do you pray but when do you pray?

When the Lord teaches his disciples to pray, he is teaching them to detach themselves from this world and attach themselves to the Father. If you think that prayer is a waste of time; that it does you no good, then it is because you do not pray!

I know the power of prayer because I have seen it with my own eyes. I also know what the lack of prayer can do to me and to others, because I have seen it with my own eyes.

5 comments:

  1. I LOVE the photo (painting?)! And the meditation!

    By the grace of God and the encouragement of good priests ;), I once again "desire" to pray! I look forward to those few moments when I can be at peace; the peace that only an all-powerful and all-loving God can give. I think so much of the time we are trying to escape; escape from our problems, from pain, from our busy schedules, and we so often choose the wrong means of escape. I just wonder how much better a place the world might be if we all "escaped" into prayer...

    "If my plans are falling apart and I along with them, then it is because I do not pray" I found this to be a very helpful :). It was also interesting to me that you said, "If I am struggling with addictions, it is because I do not pray." Do you think that prayer can 'cure' one's "struggle" with addiction? I'm not sure what I think...but it's definitely food for thought.

    God Bless you Padre!

    - Jessica

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  2. Excellent Meditation Father!

    Prayer is so important. Thank You for constantly reminding and holding me accountable to pray each and every day. I know that during a busy day that is the easiest thing to abandon but the thing I need the most. As a mother, I know how powerful prayer is for your children. It is not easy watching your children struggle and find their way. Praying for them gives me much peace that in His time my children will be okay and find their way home.

    I also loved the clip-art...adorable! She is really praying hard!

    God Bless You!

    Rose :)

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  3. I went years and years without praying, well unless I was in dire straights.

    And I didn't really get it until my daughter was in middle school. That is when my knees hit the ground for real!

    Another reason children are a gift from God.
    They bring parents who've neglected the Lord back to Him. It did me.

    It's almost a decade later and that middle school child is sewing her wild oats neglecting the Lord herself so my prayers continue for her.

    I have absolutely no doubt she'll be back. I just don't know when.

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  4. Dear Father in Christ,

    Yes Father- when we pray and jump into His Word no dought the Holy Spirit stirs within us that extra zeal to sustain us for the day.You are a living breathing example of this to all who know you. Rose's comment on praying for others hold so true... it not only brings them graces but praying for others also brings us peace in by the faith in God. Through prayer our faith is also exersised because we are casting our concerns over to God. Just yesterday I recalled when you started your reflections.Many prayers were and still are offered up that you stay constant in allowing God to penetrate you daily through His word in your committment to the meditations. Today I see your comment on the importance of the meditations and prayer is confirmation & testimony to a life lived committed to staying in contact with God through His word and sustained by prayers of others. You pour out so much to all of us running from here to there at the speed of light let us all be reminded to lift you daily in prayer. May you endure and refuel in Christ the one constant- the Word!!!

    Taken from Fr. Hardon..
    "Why, then, pray for priests? Because through prayer we gain graces for them which otherwise they would not obtain.....how much more should we pray for priests from whom we have received Jesus Christ in the Eucharist – and by whom we have been so often absolved from our sins. I don't want to even think of the state of soul I would be in except for the absolutions that over the years I have received from priests. As fellow members of the Mystical Body priests need, desperately need, our help and in no way more urgently than to obtain through the prayers we offer for them the graces from God of which, in my judgment, no one stands in greater need than do priests."

    Thank you Father. May God bless you for your constant daily sacrifices for us, His Church and may our Blessed Mother constantly keep you in Her loving embrace.

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  5. Thank you, Father for reminding us about the importance of prayers! Just last night I felt as if I was falling apart. In my pain, I remembered the bible of the day in which Jesus told us that God knew everything even before we opened our mouth, so I started to pray Our Father. My mind was in such a chaos that I could not talk to him. I could just pray Our Father again and again. Yes, I do not know how to pray. I do not spend time staying awake with Him, but I am thankful that He is still with me. Deep in my heart, I know I need to get to Him, and it is only in Him that I can find a resolution for my life. Now I pray that I could make the effort to make praying a habit in my life. After all the hardship in my life, I believe that God always has a plan for me. Sometimes I just feel as if the challenge and pain would overcome my capability.I do not want to have a hard life. However, if that is His will, I pray that He gives me strength to fulfill what He wants me to in this life.

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