Jesus was praying in a certain place, and when he had finished,
one of his disciples said to him,
"Lord, teach us to pray just as John taught his disciples."
He said to them, "When you pray, say:
Father, hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come.
Give us each day our daily bread
and forgive us our sins
for we ourselves forgive everyone in debt to us,
and do not subject us to the final test."
And he said to them, "Suppose one of you has a friend
to whom he goes at midnight and says,
'Friend, lend me three loaves of bread,
for a friend of mine has arrived at my house from a journey
and I have nothing to offer him,'
and he says in reply from within,
'Do not bother me; the door has already been locked
and my children and I are already in bed.
I cannot get up to give you anything.'
I tell you,
if he does not get up to give the visitor the loaves
because of their friendship,
he will get up to give him whatever he needs
because of his persistence.
"And I tell you, ask and you will receive;
seek and you will find;
knock and the door will be opened to you.
For everyone who asks, receives;
and the one who seeks, finds;
and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.
What father among you would hand his son a snake
when he asks for a fish?
Or hand him a scorpion when he asks for an egg?
If you then, who are wicked,
know how to give good gifts to your children,
how much more will the Father in heaven
give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him?"
+Prayer: Come Holy Spirit, Creator Blessed, and in our souls take up Your rest, come with Your Grace and heavenly aid, to fill the hearts which Thou hast made.
“Lord teach us to pray.” Do we ask this? This is truly a beautiful request. Can you picture where our Lord was praying? Perhaps in the hills and the disciples were close. They must have been close enough to him to notice when he finished praying, because as soon as he did, they asked him to “teach us to pray.” There is something very beautiful and intimate in this moment. Asking Jesus to teach them to pray, for these rough fisherman, was a very tender request. They must have watched him pray and desired the obvious relationship that Jesus has with the One He is communing with-with the Father. The first thing Jesus says to them (and us) is to address our Father, as “Father” when we pray. But do we do this?
Do we bring ourselves into the presence of God, as Father, as my Father and address Him first in my prayer, acknowledging His Fatherhood in my life and His Holiness and Beatitude? As young sisters, Mother Teresa would tell us, “that we may spend time in the chapel and never be with Jesus.” We can really commune with the Father and this is the first thing our Lord Jesus teaches us. When He teaches us to pray He teaches us to address the One we are speaking as “Father,” helping us to be cognizant of His role as “Father” and my identity as child; adopted, beloved son/daughter of the Father.
When I was a very young, I recall going into my parents bedroom once, when my mother was kneeling down by the bedside praying. I came over and began to chatter away to my mom. She looked up at me and put a finger to her mouth to remind me she was already speaking with someone. My mother did a very beautiful thing, she allowed me to remain close to her while she prayed. She didn’t send me away and I remember leaning on her, trying to pull her fingers from her face, but she kept praying. I stayed there a long time at her side, waiting to ask my question, but realizing she was truly praying, because she was a little tearful in her prayers, she sniffled and wiped her eyes. I remember putting my arm around her to comfort her and I put my head on her shoulder to just be near her. It’s still in my heart how I felt; I felt ‘a part of her prayer.” This is what our Lord desires of us, to come very close to Him when He prays and to ‘become a part of His prayer to the Father.” We must ask Him and ask Him often: “Lord teach me to pray” and I must allow His lead in my heart, teaching me how to commune with Him, with the Father.
Aspiration: “Bring all you are suffering to His feet, only open your heart to be loved by Him as you are, He will do the rest.” (St Mother Teresa)