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Wednesday, October 5, 2005

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Jonah 4:1-11
Psalm 86
Luke 11:1-4

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pray more, much more

"One day He was praying in a certain place." —Luke 11:1

"One of His disciples asked Him, 'Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples' " (Lk 11:1). Jesus answered with a 'Yes' and a 'No': "Yes, I'll teach you to pray." "No, I won't teach you as John taught his disciples." Jesus teaches us not to imitate John's disciples, pagans (Mt 6:8), or anyone else when we pray. We learn most things by imitation, but we cannot learn to pray this way.

Prayer is not primarily an activity but a relationship. Every relationship is unique. We learn to relate by relating, not by imitating. Likewise, we learn to pray by praying. Although we can learn a few things about prayer from others, prayer is learned primarily by on-the-job training. Therefore, those who pray the most often pray the best. There's no substitute for spending a lot of time with someone in building a deep personal relationship. The Lord teaches us to pray by calling us to pray often, even for hours. Give the Lord both quality and quantity time, and He will teach you to pray.

Prayer:  Father, give me the grace to stifle the flesh and stir up the spirit of prayer (Gal 5:17).

Promise:  "Should I not be concerned over Nineveh, the great city, in which there are more than a hundred and twenty thousand persons?" —Jon 4:11

Praise:  Sarah fosters her relationship with Jesus through daily Mass and finds it a suffering when denied that privilege.

Reference:  (For help in praying more often, read the Bible daily. For encouragement, order any or all of these audio or video tapes: Ignorance of Scriptures is Ignorance of Christ, AV 82-1, V-82, How to Pray the Bible on audio AV 82-3 or on video V-82, How to Read the Bible on audio AV 46-3 or on video V-46, Principles of Bible Interpretation, audio AV 79-1, video V-79.)

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Daniel E. Pilarczyk, Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, April 21, 2005

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