On the Inside; On the Outside


Persistence in Prayer

Posted by | Prayer | No Comments

Today, Jesus teaches that we should pray with persistence (Luke 11:5-13). Of course, the question comes to mind: if God is such a loving and caring parent who will only give “good” things to us, why do we have to persist in asking? Why do we have to ask at all? The reason is not because God needs persuading. Persistence in prayer is for our benefit. Read More

Prayer Changes Our Hearts

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Don’t hold back when praying to God – tell him exactly what’s wrong and insist on holding him to his promises. Prayer should be like speaking face-to-face with a friend: “without fear, freely and also with insistence.”

Pope Francis made these comments in a homily based on today’s reading from the Book of Exodus (32:7-14), when Moses begs God to spare his people, even though they have created a golden calf to worship as their god.

Pope Francis said that Moses shows what praying to God should really feel and sound like: not filled with empty words, but a heartfelt, “real fight with God.”

Moses is courageously insistent and argues his point, and prayer must also be “a negotiation with God, presenting arguments” supporting one’s position.

When God decides to not punish his people, it’s not God who has changed, but Moses, Pope Francis said.

“Prayer changes our hearts. It helps us better understand what our God is like. It helps us grow closer to him, recognize his love and rejuvenate our faith.”

The pope underlined what Jesus said: “In praying, do not babble like the pagans, who think that they will be heard because of their many words.”

“No, say what’s what: ‘Look, Lord, I have this problem, in my family, with my child, with this, with that … What can you do? Now see here, you can’t leave me like this.’ This is prayer.”

Pray like Moses did, face-to-face with the Lord, like a friend, freely, with insistence and good arguments, the pope said. “And also scold the Lord a little: ‘Hey, you promised me this, and you haven’t done it …’ Like that, like you talk with a friend.”

Open one’s heart wide to God and get to know him better, and you’ll be amazed at how your relationship with the Lord will deepen and grow.

Jesus is Praying for Us

Posted by | Emotions/Feelings | No Comments

Did you know that each one of us is mentioned in the Gospel reading for today? (John 17:20-26) We are! Jesus is talking about us – in fact, he is praying for us. First, Jesus prays for his disciples, the ones he will be sending out into the world. But then, Jesus shifts his prayer to include others. He says: “I pray not only for these, but also for those who will believe in me through their word…”

So what is the Lord praying for? What does he want for us? What is his will for us? Jesus asks “that they may all be one, as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us…” Read More

Choose Life

Posted by | Everyday Life | No Comments

If you have been following my blog, you have noticed that I lost my job three weeks ago today. Along with that, there have been additional health concerns that have developed within my family. Needless to say, it’s been a rough few weeks.

In today’s reading from Deuteronomy, Moses lays it out clearly for the people of Israel:

“I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. Choose life then, that you and your descendants may live…” Read More

Our One Great Big "I"

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Everybody knows what a Cyclops is, right? It’s that strange monster with one big eye in the middle of its forehead. And we think, what a bizarre creature, this Cyclops, with one big eye. But for 325 days of each year, we are all Cyclopes! Let me explain. Read More

Are You Living the Gospel?

Posted by | Discipleship | No Comments

When you think of religion in Asia, one automatically thinks of Buddhism and Confucianism. You can imagine how surprised I was when I found out that in South Korea today, a tiny fraction of the population is Confucian, 26% is Buddhist, and 26% is Christian – 10% of whom are Catholic. The means that Christianity is tied, numerically speaking, as the largest religion in that Asian nation. This is truly remarkable considering that Christianity was introduced there just over 200 years ago, and the first native-born priest was ordained only in 1846.

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