Daily Reflection – May 21, 2016
Saturday 21 May 2016
Let my prayer come like incense before you
Psalm 140(141):1-3, 8
Gospel Reading: Mark 10:13-16
Today’s Saint: St Christopher Magallanes, Priest, and Companions, Martyrs
Today’s Note: Saturday of the Seventh Week in Ordinary Time
People were bringing children to Jesus that he might touch them,
but the disciples rebuked them.
When Jesus saw this he became indignant and said to them,
“Let the children come to me; do not prevent them,
for the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these.
Amen, I say to you,
whoever does not accept the Kingdom of God like a child
will not enter it.”
Then he embraced the children and blessed them,
placing his hands on them.
He should pray. (James 5:13)
When should we pray? All the time, according to James! Of course, we should still make sure we are setting aside a specific time for prayer every day, but that shouldn’t be the extent of our prayer lives. We can learn to pray—to tune into God’s presence—every moment of the day. Are you struggling? Pray! Are you happy? Pray! Are you sick? Pray! Has a temptation tripped you up? Pray! Let every situation, good and bad, become an opportunity for prayer.
Our brothers and sisters in heaven, the saints, give us some guidance on what this type of prayer looks like. Venerable Charles de Foucauld described prayer as “familiar converse with our Beloved.” St. Thérèse of Lisieux called it a launching out of our hearts toward God, “lifting our eyes toward heaven whether from the crest of joy or the trough of despair.”
Wouldn’t it be great if God were involved with all the details of your life in the way these saints describe? Well, he is! That means that your prayer can be as familiar as the conversations you have with your spouse or your best friend. This idea can sound unrealistic, but it really isn’t. We just need to know how to get there.
Here’s one way you might want to try today: choose a Scripture passage or an encouraging phrase—maybe “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” or “Jesus, I trust in you.” Write it on a piece of paper, and put it in your pocket, or tape it to your computer screen. Let it become your “mantra” today. When you find yourself feeling agitated, repeat this phrase a few times, either out loud or in your heart. When you transition between activities, recall it. When you enjoy a success, proclaim it in thanksgiving. When you face a road bump, proclaim it in faith. Over time, you’ll become more aware that Jesus is with you, and you’ll find yourself talking with him.
Of course, this is just one suggestion. There are many ways to learn how to “pray always.” No matter what strategy you use, remember that the point is to lift your eyes to heaven and discover that Jesus is with you—always!
“Lord, teach me how to walk with you during every moment of my life.”