Reflection for January 2016

What should we talk about when engaged in prayerful discourse with God? The format of the Lord’s Prayer is a God-given model to follow when we pray.  The needs and interests of God will be our first concern: pray for God’s person to be properly reverenced by everyone, pray for the coming of God’s kingdom on earth, pray that God’s will may be done as perfectly on earth as in heaven. Then we turn to the needs of the world and ask the same blessings and graces for the whole human race as we ask for ourselves.  The Lord’s Prayer is a “we” and “us” prayer, not merely a “me” and “my” prayer.  We pray for the fulfillment of all those daily needs, both bodily and spiritual, which are required for a full, happy life on earth. We pray for God’s forgiveness of our sins and promise to forgive all who have hurt us. We pray for the courage and grace to face temptation without falling into sin. We pray for deliverance from evil.
There is a deep mystery as to why prayer is so powerful. Jesus tells us in the Gospel, “There are certain evils which can be cast out only by prayer” (Mk 9:29). In a very real way God has put the destiny of the whole world into our hands. We are free to lead creation either toward good or evil. Prayer is the first way by which we lead the human race toward God and goodness. It is not the only way but it is one of the more important ways.

Many prayerful blessings to you all!

Monsignor Chester Michael

(From Open Door Inc, January-March 1993)