WE NEED TO PRAY
Perhaps the most serious tragedy for people of today is their growing incapacity for prayer. We’re forgetting what it is to pray. New generations abandon the practices of piety and the formulas of prayer that have nourished the faith of their parents. We’ve reduced the time dedicated to prayer and interior reflection. Sometimes we practically exclude it from our life.
But this isn’t what’s most serious. It seems that people are losing a capacity for inner silence. They’re no longer capable of meeting up with the depths of their being. Distracted by a thousand sensations, numbed within, chained to an exhausting rhythm of living, they are abandoning the praying attitude before God.
On the other hand, in a society in which we accept efficacy, performance or immediate usefulness as the first and almost only criterion, prayer ends up devalued as something useless. It’s easily affirmed that what’s important is «life», as if prayer pertained to the world of «death».
However we need to pray. It’s not possible to vigorously live a Christian faith or the human vocation interiorly undernourished. Sooner or later the person experiences the dissatisfaction that is produced in the human heart by inner emptiness, the pettiness of daily life, the boredom with life or the absence of communication with Mystery.
We need to pray in order to find silence, serenity, and rest that lets us sustain the rhythm of our daily duties. We need to pray in order to live lucidly and vigilant in the middle of a superficial and dehumanizing society.
We need to pray in order to confront our own truth and be capable of a sincere personal self-criticism. We need to pray in order to go about freeing ourselves from what keeps us from being most human. We need to pray in order to live before God in a more festive, thankful and creative attitude.
Blessed are those who even in these days are capable of experiencing the truth of Jesus’ words in the depths of their being: «Everyone who asks receives; everyone who searches finds; everyone who knocks will have the door opened».
José Antonio Pagola
Translator: Fr. Jay VonHandorf