In the letter to Philemon, St.Paul pleads on behalf of the slave Onesimus. We are reminded afresh of our calling. We are called, chosen, and handpicked to be prayer warriors, lightning conductors, humble intercessors on behalf of our brothers and sisters in need. How often have we lived up to this calling?
Most often, as we sit in prayer, our prayers revolve around ourselves and our families. It is about laying down our burdens, pressing issues, sicknesses, and crises, asking for blessings and graces, for our happiness and fulfillment. We feel that our burdens are heavier than those of others and our issues are more urgent. Often our needs become so great, we fail to remember the requests of our friends and relatives and lift them up in prayer. How often do we promise to pray for someone but immersed in our own difficulties, forget to pray for them?
Let us make a conscious effort to follow the example of St. Paul and for a moment, forget about our needs, and intercede for our nation, our people in this time of dire need, and draw upon them God’s favour. Let us call to mind, each person who has asked prayers from us and fervently lift them up to the hands of the Father.
As we put our need next to the needs of the other, we are given the powerful assurance ‘I am the vine and you are the branches…’ (John 15:5) When we live in this realization, we are no longer separate individuals but parts of the body of Christ. We become one with Christ and without effort or asking from our part, our needs are met, our desires fulfilled, our lives transformed and we are set free to be sensitive to the needs of the other. Our lives will not only be about ourselves anymore.
In living so, just as it is revealed in the Gospel Proclamation, we will start to experience the kingdom of God, within us, surrounding us and consuming us.
Prayer: Abba Father, You are our God from age to age and You reign forever. Our help comes from You alone. Amen.
Source: On our Knees publication (November Edition)