“Everyone will hold prayer in great esteem, dedicating himself to it all life long because our Lord wanted all graces to depend on it.”(RA p. 114)
In the quote above, St. Annibale Maria di Francia wants all his spiritual children to hold fast in prayer. Through prayer we can communicate heart to heart with the Lord and it gives joy at the deepest core of our being. God listens and, even before we ask, He knows already what we need. Only then do we need to ask with faith and humble trust.
Some years ago, there was a lady who approached me and asked for prayers – to pray for a couple whose relationship was in danger, adversely affecting their married life. In the silence of my heart I prayed for the couple and whispered to God the Lord’s Prayer (Our Father…). The following week I saw the lady again and she said: “Thank you, your prayers have been granted.” That moment, I was filled with joy and thanked God for saving the relationship of this couple. Another experience of prayer that I treasure was when I saw an old man from afar in need of help with his carabao (a type of water buffalo in the Philippines), sunk in the deep mud from which it appeared that it would not be possible, for all the man’s efforts, to lift it up. I prayed for him – prayed for his need at that moment. God was so amazing and I was filled with awe and wonder for He answered my prayers. I rejoiced wholeheartedly and I was so happy that the old man was helped by God.
Communicating to God through prayers has many ways – it is not only the Lord’s Prayer but we can even use our own words, words with the deepest trust in God’s help and mercy. The Our Father (Mt. 6:9) is the prayer our Lord Jesus taught His disciples. It is the power and wisdom of God. It is a prayer that I believe everyone can uphold for others and for oneself. It is the prayer that leads us to a deeper relationship with God.
Let us desire to pray ardently for others, ourselves and for the whole world. May we cherish the joy we experience and offer it for God’s glory. May we be grateful to God always – the God who listens and who is the source of every grace!