OCTOBER 10, 2020 SATURDAY
‘So I say to you, Ask, and it will be given to you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened for you. For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who searches finds, and for everyone who knocks, the door will be opened. — Luke 13: 9-10
Dear Church Family,
Stage Two in Four Stages of Prayer: Talking to God. We’re first taught to say simple, childhood prayers. Or we listen and mimic adults, praying their words.s Sometimes notice a person switches into King James English when praying, thinking that’s a more formal and presentable way to address God, as they heard as a child – a “thee, thou, art or shalt.” In King James’ day it was the equivalent of our day – “you, you all, are, or shall.” Just a little example of Stage Two — words we overhear or are taught no longer “carry the luggage.”
Jesus is pretty simple. Talking to God — just ask, seek knock, in your words. Speak to God from your heart, not someone else’s. At first it may seem hard -you stumble, stammer, not sure. God already knows what you’re trying to say. Prayer is a way we develop a personal relationship with God, as we do a friend.
But you may wonder — how do I talk to a being with no physical body. God is no bearded man sitting on a throne in the clouds — even though God is described in human-like terms. What emotions does your God-image evoke from you? To whom do you speak? And God speaks, but how? More later.
Hold onto such questions. They don’t go away, for God is a mystery, known and unknown. Pray what’s in your heart to One who loves and wants to be in relationship with you. God becomes more than a distant acquaintance. God is a captive audience ready and waiting to listen to what you have to say. You are in God’s presence – your mind focused and heart opened to God, who accepts you without critique and loves you without question. You begin to speak your words, not someone else’s – share your thoughts, hopes, what’s most on your mind. It’s the positive thoughts – and negative ones – what’s upsetting you, what you fear, asking God for a miracle. Never fear how God will react. God always waits to hear your words, and holds you in his love – regardless of silence, disappointment, or satisfaction. Your relationship with God is greater than magically receiving what you ask. He gives you far more than you imagine.
It takes a leap of faith to ask, search, knock. Trust God never rejects you or anyone. It’s your leap of faith and trust. God invites and waits. Come with your hands open, your heart open – sharing your joys, sorrows, regrets, failures – your up’s and down’s.
Nothing is wrong with using prayers of others. Let those prayers help free you, to speak with God in your own words. In this way, you begin talking to and with God. And if you don’t get what you ask, search for, pound on heaven’s door to receive — don’t ever let that stop you. Trust God that one day you’ll understand. Here’s where Julian of Norwich – Jesus’ words to her – help me: “All shall be well.”Blessings — let God hear from YOU today, Fr. Steve