Saturday, November 18, 2006

Pray without ceasing...

One of the greatest mistakes a person caught in sin makes is neglecting prayer. The Lord hears our prayer when we are reduced to hopelessness and find ourselves turning to him asking for help - especially when there is no one else, or anything else to turn to.
"There is no pit so deep that his love is not deeper still." Betsy Tenboom said that amidst the horrors of the concentration camp.
Saturday's Gospel always speaks to my heart when "Jesus told his disciples a parable about the necessity for them to pray always without becoming weary." Luke 18
The Gospel of Luke is particularly focused upon the mercy of Jesus. Jesus was speaking to sinners. Sinners who seek freedom from habitual sin. Some may come so far as to pray daily, go to confession, do everything in their power to break free of a particular sin. Or they may find themselves steeped in some addiction, and only when faced with their hopeless condition, turn to the Lord for mercy. Then our Lord, moved with pity at the sight of our misery, for that is the meaning of mercy, finally lifts the soul up, grants the grace of freedom. It may take years, but the Lord responds because of our persistence.
Never give up prayer, even when caught in some sin. Do not think about merit or anything else, just keep crying out. God hears the prayer of the sinner, the person in dire straights. People think they have to be good to pray - no! - God always hears the sinner when he cries out for help, for mercy.
He asks for our sins when we have nothing else to offer.
He welcomed sinners and ate with them.
He said those who are well do not need a Doctor - sick people do.
There is just not any pit so deep and dark that his love is not deeper still.
Today's Gospel is so encouraging - never let anyone discourage you from prayer.