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Posts Tagged ‘Meditation’

“To pray is to talk with God. But about what?”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2015/09/18 at 12:00 AM
You write: ‘To pray is to talk with God. But about what?’ About what? About Him, about yourself: joys, sorrows, successes and failures, noble ambitions, daily worries, weaknesses! And acts of thanksgiving and petitions: and Love and reparation. In a word: to get to know him and to get to know yourself: ‘to get acquainted!’ (The Way, 91)

“A prayer to my living God.” If God is life for us, we should not be surprised to realize that our very existence as Christians must be interwoven with prayer. But don’t imagine that prayer is an action to be carried out and then forgotten. The just man “delights in the law of the Lord, and meditates on his law day and night.” “Through the night I meditate on you” and “my prayer comes to you like incense in the evening” [1]. Our whole day can be a time for prayer — from night to morning and from morning to night. In fact, as holy Scripture reminds us, even our sleep should be a prayer.

Our life of prayer should also be based on some moments that are dedicated exclusively to our conversation with God, moments of silent dialogue, before the tabernacle if possible, in order to thank our Lord for having waited for us — so often alone — for twenty centuries. This heart‑to‑heart dialogue with God is mental prayer, in which the whole soul takes part; intelligence, imagination, memory and will are all involved. It is a meditation that helps to give supernatural value to our poor human life, with all its normal, everyday occurrences.

Thanks to these moments of meditation and to our vocal prayer and aspirations, we will be able to turn our whole day into a continuous praise of God, in a natural way and without any outward display. Just as people in love are always thinking about each other, we will be aware of God’s presence. And all our actions, down to the most insignificant, will be filled with spiritual effectiveness.

This is why, as a Christian sets out on his way of uninterrupted dealing with our Lord, his interior life grows and becomes strong and secure. And he is led to engage in the demanding yet attractive struggle to fulfill completely the will of God. (Christ is passing by, 119)

[1] Cf Ps 140:2

Mary and Martha

In Uncategorized on 2014/04/11 at 12:00 AM

 The Holy Father’s Sunday meditation before praying the Angelus this morning was dedicated to Jesus’ visit to the house of Martha and Mary in Bethany in the Gospel of St. Luke, and the two key themes of Christian life: contemplation, listening to the Word of God and the concrete service of our neighbour. These are not to be experienced separately, but rather are two aspects to be lived “in profound unity and harmony”.

The Bishop of Rome explained to the thousands of the faithful gathered in St. Peter’s Square that the two sisters “both welcome the Lord, but in different ways. Mary sits at Jesus’ feet, listening, whereas Martha is absorbed in domestic tasks and is so busy that she turns to Jesus saying: ‘Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me by myself to do the serving? Tell her to help me’. And Jesus responds rebuking her with sweetness. ‘Martha, Martha, you are anxious and worried about many things. There is the need for only one thing’”.

“What does Jesus wish to say?” continued the Pope. “Above all it is important to understand that it is not a matter of two contrasting attitudes: listening to the Word of the Lord – contemplation – and concrete service to our neighbour. They are not two opposed attitudes but, on the contrary, they are both aspects that are essential for our Christian life; aspects that must never be separated but rather lived in profound unity and harmony”.

“So why does Jesus rebuke Martha? Because she considered only what she was doing to be essential; she was too absorbed and worried about things to ‘do’. For a Christian, the works of service and charity are never detached from the principle source of our action: that is, listening to the Word of the Lord, sitting – like Mary – at Jesus’ feet in the attitude of a disciple. And for this reason Mary is rebuked”.

Pope Francis affirmed that “in our Christian life too prayer and action are always profoundly united. Prayer that does not lead to concrete action toward a brother who is poor, sick, in need of help … is a sterile and incomplete prayer. But, in the same way, when in ecclesial service we are only concerned with what we are doing, we give greater weight to things, functions and structures, forgetting the centrality of Christ; we do not set aside time for dialogue with Him in prayer, we run the risk of serving ourselves and not God, present in our brother in need”.

“Let us ask the Virgin Mary, Mother of listening and service, who teaches us to meditate on the Word of her Son in our heart, to pray with fidelity, and to be ever more concretely attentive to the needs of our brothers”.

“It’s not enough to be good; you need to show it”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2012/02/21 at 9:11 AM

It’s not enough to be good; you need to show it. What would you say of a rose bush which produced only thorns? (Furrow, 735)

You understood the meaning of friendship when you began to feel that you were like the shepherd of a little flock which you had left abandoned, but were now trying to gather together again, taking it upon yourself to serve each one of them. (Furrow, 730)

You cannot just be passive. You have to become a real friend of your friends. You can help them first with the example of your behavior and then with your advice and with the influence that a close friendship provides. (Furrow, 731)

Meditate upon this carefully and act accordingly: people who think you are unpleasant will stop thinking that when they realize that you really like them. It is up to you. (Furrow, 734)

You consider yourself a friend because you say nothing bad. That is true, but I see in you no sign of giving good example or service. This kind make the worst friends. (Furrow, 740)

“He listens to us and answers us”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2012/02/14 at 9:11 AM

And in my meditation a fire shall flame out.’ That is why you go to pray: to become a bonfire, a living flame giving heat and light. So, when you are not able to go on, when you feel that your fire is dying out, if you cannot throw on it sweet- smelling logs, throw on the branches and twigs of short vocal prayers and ejaculations, to keep the bonfire burning. And you will not have wasted your time. (The Way, 91)

If we truly want to unburden our hearts, and are honest and sincere about it, we seek the advice of those who love and understand us: our father or mother, wife or husband, our brother or friend. Even though often what we want isn’t so much to listen as to express our feelings and say what has happened to us, a dialogue has already begun. Let us begin to do the same with God; we can be quite sure he listens to us and answers us. Let us pay attention to him and open up our soul in humble conversation, telling him in confidence everything that is on our mind and in our heart: our joys, sorrows, hopes, annoyances, successes, failures, even the most trivial happenings in our day. We will discover that our Heavenly Father is interested in everything about us…

In this way, almost without realizing it, we will go forward at God’s pace, taking strong and vigorous strides. We will come to sense deep in our hearts that when we are close to Our Lord we are able to find joy in suffering, self‑denial and sorrow. What a great source of strength it is for a son of God to know that he is so close to his Father! This is why, my Lord and Father, no matter what happens, I stand firm and secure with you, because you are my rock and my strength [1]. (Friends of God, 245-246)

[1] cf 2 Kings 22:2

“We have to meditate on the life of Jesus Christ”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2012/01/24 at 9:11 AM

I advised you to read the New Testament and to enter into each scene and take part in it, as one more of the characters. The minutes you spend in this way each day enable you to incarnate the Gospel, reflect it in your life and help others to reflect it. (Furrow, 672)

To be Christ himself, we must see ourselves in him. It’s not enough to have a general idea of the spirit of Jesus’ life; we have to learn the details of his life and, through them, his attitudes. And, especially, we must contemplate his life, to derive from it strength, light, serenity, peace.

When you love someone, you want to know all about his life and character, so as to become like him. That is why we have to meditate on the life of Jesus, from his birth in a stable right up to his death and resurrection. In the early years of my life as a priest, I used to give people presents of copies of the Gospel and books about the life of Jesus. For we do need to know it well, to have it in our heart and mind, so that at any time, without any book, we can close our eyes and contemplate his life, watching it like a movie. In this way the words and actions of our Lord will come to mind in all the different circumstances of our life. (Christ is passing by, 107)

“To meditate for a while each day befits conscientious Christians”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2012/01/11 at 11:00 PM

You go on attending some classes daily, merely because in them you acquire a certain rather limited knowledge. How is it then that you are not constant in going to the Master, who is always ready to teach you the science of interior life, with its eternal content and saviour? (Furrow, 663)

What is a man or the greatest reward on earth worth compared with Jesus Christ, who is always ready to be with you? (Furrow, 664)

To meditate for a while each day and be united in friendship with God is something that makes sense to people who know how to make good use of their lives. It befits conscientious Christians who live up to their convictions. (Furrow, 665)

Those in love do not know how to say good-bye: they are with one another all the time. Do you and I know how to love the Lord like this? (Furrow, 666)

Have you noticed how many of your companions know how to be very kind and considerate when dealing with the people they love, whether it is their girlfriend, their wife, their children or their family. Tell them that the Lord does not deserve less, and ask it of yourself, too. May they treat him in that way. Tell them that if they continue being kind and considerate, but do it with him and for him, they will achieve, even here on earth, a happiness they had never dreamed of. (Furrow, 676)

Gospel Guide

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2011/05/25 at 11:10 PM

“In knowing Jesus Christ we will know the purpose of life and of all things.

‘It is not enough to have a general idea of the spirit of Jesus’ life; we have to learn the details of his life and, through hem, his attitudes…. When you love someone, you want to know all about him, his life and his personality, so as to become like him’ (Escriva Christ Is Passing By.)

‘In the Sacred Books the Father who is in Heaven comes lovingly to meet his children, and talks with them.’ (Second Vatican Council, Dei Verbum) 

We should listen to the Gospel as though Christ sere present and talking to us.’  St. Augustine, (Commentary on St. John, 30)

To read and meditate on the Gospel fruitfully we have to do so with faith, knowing that it contains the truths of salvation, and contains them without error….  We need to have the life of Christ  in our hearts and minds, so that at any time, without any book, we can close our eyes and contemplate his life, watching it like a film….  We must be completely involved and play a part in his life.  Christ’s words will enter deep into our soul and will really change us…..  Escriva, (Christ is Passing By, 107 )

As we read, we will recognize ourselves in some character in a parable, or we will feel that certain words are aimed at us in a particular way.

Try to do your Gospel reading first thing in the morning, trying to focus on some practical point which can help you in our presence of God during the day or help us to imitate Our Lord in some way.

Fernandez, Francis  In Conversation with God, Vol.II, 74.