The Gospel according to Luke (11:5-13)
Jesus said to his disciples: “Suppose one of you has a friend to whom he goes at midnight and says, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread, for a friend of mine has arrived at my house from a journey and I have nothing to offer him,’ and he says in reply from within, ‘Do not bother me; the door has already been locked and my children and I are already in bed. I cannot get up to give you anything.’ I tell you, if he does not get up to give him the loaves because of their friendship, he will get up to give him whatever he needs because of his persistence. And I tell you, ask and you will receive; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives; and the one who seeks, finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. What father among you would hand his son a snake when he asks for a fish? Or hand him a scorpion when he asks for an egg? If you then, who are wicked, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the Father in Heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him?”
Reflection: When I was ten years old, I spent a year with my family in Mexico. I lived with my tío Fidel, who was a priest, my tía Hermelida, his sister, and their mom, my abuelita Jesusita. My abuelita and I shared a bedroom that had no electricity. One of my favorite and most treasured memories was saying my nightly prayers then watching my grandmother blow out the candles and falling asleep while she prayed the rosary. This is what we did every night without fail.
In yesterday’s gospel Jesus’ disciples had just asked him to teach them how to pray. He taught them the words that we still use in the Our Father. In today’s gospel he teaches them and us about persistence in prayer and how God answers us. This reminded me of the acronym P.U.S.H., Pray Until Something Happens. Jesus, along with many others, continue to encourage our tenacity when it comes to our prayer life. Especially when we perceive that our prayers are ineffective.
As we mature there are many things that are either revealed or become more focused. I believe God waits patiently for our prayer to mature from a personal wish list to asking for the grace we need to, as Saint Paul says, “bear our share of the hardship for the gospel”. We become the “Good News” and are transformed from spectator to participant.
Our prayer life should always include our needs and the needs of others. But it should also help us evolve into servants who become the hands and feet of Christ. When we ask our Heavenly Father for help, He provides. Not just for our needs but for the Holy Spirit to help guide our efforts where they will bear the most fruit.
Action of the Day: I invite all of us to look back at our prayer lives. What has changed? Have people been cured, relieved of their burdens, moved past small or great challenges? Let’s take a look at ourselves. Have we changed? I believe if our prayer has been sincere and from a place of humility then the answer will be a resounding yes! Trust that God provides, P.U.S.H. and see what happens!!