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!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Lk 18:35-43 What Do You Want From Me?

Monday of the Thirty-Third Week in Ordinary Time
(Click here for readings)


As Jesus approached Jericho
a blind man was sitting by the roadside begging,
and hearing a crowd going by, he inquired what was happening.
They told him,
“Jesus of Nazareth is passing by.”
He shouted, “Jesus, Son of David, have pity on me!”
The people walking in front rebuked him,
telling him to be silent,
but he kept calling out all the more,
“Son of David, have pity on me!”

I have to admit that when I read this reading, I was stumped. How could I be stumped, you may ask? This is such an exciting part of the Bible—a miraculous healing! A poor man, spared against all odds and against public opinion! Nevertheless, I couldn’t think of which angle to take. It wasn’t “clicking” with me, and meanwhile, Father’s blog post loomed large at the bottom of my Sunday homework pile, the entire pile remaining untouched until the last minute (although, let’s be serious, that’s not unusual). Anyway, I decided to ask some of my youth group friends tonight, and of course, they gave me something good right away. One of my friends asked the best question I had heard—“Why did Jesus ask the blind man what he needed if he clearly knew all along? What is that supposed to mean?” That was gold!!!

What do you want me to do for you? That is a great question that my friend posed. Why does Jesus, the all-knowing King of heaven and earth, have to ask this question to the blind man?

I went to a baptism this morning of one of my family members. The whole event had me reflecting on my own baptism all day. What a great gift, to be received into the Church and adopted as one of God’s children! Baptism is a great gift that God wants to give us—He wants to take us in as a member of His family and cleanse us of our sin. When my friend posed this question to me about Jesus asking questions, the words from the baptismal liturgy rang in my head: “What do you ask of God’s Church?” Imagine-- Well, I don’t know, Father So-and-so, I just walked in this church all dressed up with my extremely loud, Italian extended family for some good fun, and I dressed my infant (who always manages to make a mess of their clothing) in a white dress just for the thrill of it. But I don’t know what I ask of God’s Church. Sassy, maybe, but it proves my point. This question in Baptism is seemingly easily answered. Why do we ask it, then?

Or, consider some stories from the Bible (this is coming right out of my theology class—another case of great timing for this blog post). When Adam and Eve commit the world’s first sin, why does God question them about it? He knows full well what they did, but still he asks them, “Where are you? Why are you hiding? What have you done?” Why does He ask questions that He knows the answer to? Or consider Cain and Abel! “Where is your brother?"

Another story on this topic. This is a story that I told the freshman from my high school on their retreat this year. Shortly after I entered Catholic schools, I was presented the opportunity to go to Confession for the first time in a very long time. I had been one of those hyper-intellectual, rebellious children who are crazy in their own mind but yet not daring enough to get in any serious trouble—I am sure you know one. Still, there were a lot of things to confess. Of course, I was the last one in line because I nearly chickened out. The class period ended right before I was supposed to go, and I thought that was my ticket out, but then my theology teacher came to me and asked, “Katie, the priest is willing to stay for you. Do you still want to confess?” Ugh!!!! I was all the more petrified that I had to verbally commit to going, but thanks be to God I said yes. I have no doubt that God placed that question there for a purpose. Why would he ask, though, if He knew the intentions of my heart?

Another consideration-- have you ever gone through a rough patch in your spiritual life that seemed to never end until you finally realized you were the one at fault? Maybe you weren’t praying enough. Maybe you had stumbled into some fault unknowingly. Then, God made you realize what you were doing wrong through some kind of prompting that He placed in your life or on your heart. Why did God make you wait to realize what you were doing wrong? Why did God make you experience the sting of realizing that you were at fault?

Back to the central question: Why does God ask us questions or prompt us if He knows what is on our hearts?

Lord, please let me see. God asks us questions because He wants us to have to express our need for Him. He wants us to verbally confess our sins and shortcomings, to ask him for help, to acknowledge that we are in need of Him. If God were to come and fix everything in our lives without letting us see and acknowledge our need for Him, how would we learn? In Baptism, we acknowledge our need of the sacrament as powerless children in need of salvation. In Confession, we come before a priest in humility and acknowledge our sins to God, who already knows them fully. In the same way, God questioned Adam and Eve and Cain because He wanted them to fully own up to what they had done. We are the ones who need to actively confess our need and acknowledge our limitations. God reaches out to us in more ways than we will ever be able to realize on this Earth—it is only fitting that God prompts us to reach out to Him in our walk with Him.

Let’s pray that this week we will be aware of the questions and promptings of God in our lives.

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