STEP #1: LECTIO / READ
Jesus was praying in a certain place, and when he had finished,
one of his disciples said to him,
"Lord, teach us to pray just as John taught his disciples."
He said to them, "When you pray, say:
Father, hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come.
Give us each day our daily bread
and forgive us our sins
for we ourselves forgive everyone in debt to us,
and do not subject us to the final test."
And he said to them, "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 the visitor 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?"
STEP #2: MEDITATIO / MEDITATE
I remember being a child and really wanting a toy submarine. I wanted it so bad that I even made a deal with the Lord: "God if you get this for me, I will never ask you for anything in my whole life." It was as if I only had a certain amount of life-lines to God before He would say "Sorry, you have exceeded the number of requests permitted to each person." And this mentality that I have to bribe God with "I will never ask again" is exactly the opposite of what Jesus encourages us to do in today's Gospel. Jesus encourages us to keep asking!!
Jesus gives the example of a man who's neighbor keeps requesting for bread in the middle of the night. And what does he say? "He will get up to give him whatever he needs because of his persistence." It was persistence that turned the heart of the neighbor, even if not done with a generous heart, it will still be done. And that is where God differs from us; God desires to give us that which will make us happy here on earth so that we can be happy in heaven. Consider the toy submarine that I wanted, the "promise" I made to God was similar to saying "God I will be completely satisfied and need nothing else in this life if I could only have that toy submarine." This would be ludicrous! I was a child, of course I would ask for more things! Food, clothing, housing, help with homework, etc! I need to be helped in this life both as a child and as an adult. God never tires of giving us what we want, but we tire of asking as if we are inconveniencing Him. God made US, we did not make God. He is not inconvenienced by us nor is He disappointed in us nor does He tire of loving us. So follow the command of Jesus...ask Him for what you need.
STEP #3: ORATIO / PRAY
God, where in my life have I limited your power to give me the happiness you desire me to have?
What are the deep desires of my heart that you have given me but I have failed to see?
Beyond all else what is one thing that I desire most from God?
STEP #4: CONTEMPLATIO / CONTEMPLATE
Lord, if I ask...you will give.
Lord help me to receive your gifts.
FOR THE REST OF YOUR DAY...
Ask God for big things.
SMARTPHONE LOCK SCREEN
Today's prayer was prepared by Rev. Sean Grismer.
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