"lord, teach us to pray" (lk 11:1)
"The Lord is near to all who call upon Him, to all who call upon Him in truth." —Psalm 145:18
Luke pictures Jesus teaching us to pray. Jesus taught us to pray for workers for the harvest (Lk 10:2) and the outpouring of the Spirit (Lk 11:13; Acts 1:14). We should not only work like Martha, but listen like Mary who sat at the feet of Jesus and listened to His words (Lk 10:39). We can be certain that our prayers are answered (Lk 11:10-13). This should encourage us to pray, for there is "the necessity of praying always and not losing heart" (Lk 18:1).
On this feast of St. Luke, let's pray as never before. "First of all, I urge that petitions, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgiving be offered for all men, especially for kings and those in authority" (1 Tm 2:1-2). Prayer should be "first" in our life with the Lord.
Some demons cannot be driven out except by prayer and fasting (Mt 17:21, NAB). The holocaust of abortion is one of the most urgent calls to prayer in human history.
Pope John Paul II began his ministry as Pope with a call to prayer: "We feel not only the need but even a categorical imperative for great, intense, and growing prayer by all the Church. Only prayer can prevent all these great succeeding tasks and difficulties from becoming a source of crisis and make them instead the occasion and, as it were, the foundation for ever more mature achievements" (Redemptor Hominis, 22, emphasis added). Let's pray by Jesus' standards.
Prayer: Jesus, may I unlearn any wrong attitudes toward prayer. Teach me to pray.
Promise: "The Lord stood by my side and gave me strength, so that through me the preaching task might be completed and all the nations might hear the gospel." —2 Tm 4:17
Praise: St. Luke "carefully traced the whole sequence of events" in the life of Jesus and the growth of the Church (Lk 1:3). Praise You, Jesus, for the life of Luke.
Rescript: †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, May 1, 2008
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