“LORD, TEACH US TO PRAY” (Luke 11:1)
⏰Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year C)
📖Gen 18:20-32; Ps 138:1-2a, 2bcd-3, 6-7ab, 7c-8 (R.v.3a); Col 2:12-14; Luke 11:1-13
🎤”LORD, TEACH US TO PRAY” (Luke 11:1)
The formation continues my dear. Jesus is still on his way to Jerusalem where he would give up his life for our salvation. He wants to show us the right way to follow him and gain that salvation. Last Sunday, we were told of the importance of serving God how he NEEDED to be served instead of how we WANT to serve him. But how do we know how he needs to be served? The answer is provided in today’s liturgy – PRAYER!
Prayer is a communication, a dialogue between God and man. It is a kind of relationship that ushers the man into the world of the Divine so that he can understand the workings of the Divine. According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, prayer is the raising of one’s mind and heart to God.
In the Gospel of St. Luke, prayer was an important part of Jesus’ ministry. In today’s Gospel, as it is customary of him, the evangelist punctuates Jesus’ journey with a stop-over in a certain place to pray. He did not wait until he gets to Jerusalem before he could pray. That gives us the first lesson of the day – Prayer must always be our companion.
I guess the disciples got that first message and so, like Mary who sat at the foot of Jesus last Sunday, they asked him to teach them how to pray. As we can see from Jesus’ reply, when you ask God for one favour, he doubles it for you. Beyond teaching them how to pray, he also taught them that none of their prayers can go unanswered. Therefore, they must pray with great faith even the answer may seem to be very far away.
However, it is likely that there would be a danger of misinterpretation from that; people may begin to assume that God would grant them whatever they ask, whether good or bad. It is important to know the emphasis the evangelist makes on SOMETHING GOOD. God sees more than we do, and knows what shall benefit us more than we do. That is why we call him, FATHER. He already knows what he wants to do but gives us the opportunity to ask him so that he may enlighten us and make us see reasons for his actions. What a privilege!
That privilege is what Abraham enjoyed in the First Reading when he engaged in a dialogue with the Lord. From that encounter, we learn that:
👉🏽Prayer is a dialogue between God and man;
👉🏽God listens to us when we intercede for others.
Through our Baptism, we equally enjoy that privilege of being called children of God, having been washed clean of our sins. We must strive to remain in that pure state so that we can remain rooted in his presence and enjoy his gift of the Holy Spirit.
May God hear us and answer our prayers when we call upon him. Amen.