Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Priere du Jour = Prayer of the Day!!!
Prayer and Devotions
by Father Jason Smith, LC
Resolution: Set the timer on your watch to remind yourself to pray the Angelus in the morning, afternoon, and evening.
December 12, 2007
Our Lady of Guadalupe
Luke 1: 26-38
“The angel Gabriel was sent from God to a town of Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man named Joseph, of the house of David, and the virgin’s name was Mary. And coming to her, he said, ‘Hail, full of grace! The Lord is with you.’ But she was greatly troubled at what was said and pondered what sort of greeting this might be. Then the angel said to her, ‘Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. Behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall name him Jesus. He will be great and will be called Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give him the throne of David his father, and he will rule over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.’ But Mary said to the angel, ‘How can this be, since I have no relations with a man?’ And the angel said to her in reply, ‘The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. Therefore the child to be born will be called holy, the Son of God. And behold, Elizabeth, your relative, has also conceived a son in her old age, and this is the sixth month for her who was called barren; for nothing will be impossible for God.’ Mary said, ‘Behold, I am the handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word.’ Then the angel departed from her.”
Introductory Prayer: Lord Jesus, I place myself in your presence. I have set aside this moment for you so that you can speak to me and I can listen to your words. Speak to my heart! I believe that you are present, bringing all the graces I need right now in the current circumstances of my life. I hope in you, Lord, because I know I cannot place my hope in the things of the world. I love you, Lord, and I know how much you love me.
Petition:Mary, I ask you to obtain for the me the grace always to say yes to God as you did.
1. The Angelus Few know the GPS system was actually invented back in 1239. It didn’t give directions, but it did help people keep focused on what’s important. Every morning, afternoon, and evening, in countryside or city, the church bells tolled the Angelus, the prayer recalling the angel’s message to Mary. It’s fitting to repeat this beautiful prayer at the beginning, middle, and end of the day, for it expresses so well the magnificent reality that our whole life should be centered upon the Incarnation. The tolling of the Angelus bells also invites us to imitate Mary’s yes in the morning, afternoon, and evening of today’s life. By praying the Angelus throughout the day and so turning our hearts to God, we avoid getting lost on our pilgrimage to heaven.
2. Yes, Lord! Do you want to change the world? A humble maiden from Nazareth did. After the angel Gabriel left, Mary’s yes changed salvation history. It changed our lives. As we struggle back and forth with what we know God is asking of us, we can forget the far-reaching implications of our saying yes to God. Are we not a link in the divine plan, too? Our yes is not indifferent. A yes to God always changes lives. A no…? Well, it’s better to stay positive and focus on being generous with God. As we contemplate the angel bringing God’s message to Mary, let us also reflect on the far-reaching implications of our own yes. It can change the world.
3. Angels in Our Lives Every time we read Scripture, Christ becomes present in our lives because he is present in his written word. The word “Angel” comes from the Greek verb angelos meaning “to send”. Angels are sent to carry God’s Word. Sometimes God sends “angels” (messengers) to us in the people around us, although sometimes we don’t recognize this until after the fact. However, we know that Sacred Scripture is the Word of God. When we read the Word of God with an open heart, we are like Mary when she heard the message of the angel. When we make Scripture part of our life, we can say the Word is taking “flesh” in us. We imitate Mary who accepted God’s Word, offering herself to fulfill God’s plan.
Conversation with Christ: “My God and my all! What more can I have and what more can I desire than you? O sweet and delightful Word! Sweet to him who loves the Word and not the world, nor those things that are of the world” (Thomas à Kempis, Imitation of Christ, Book 3, Chapter 34, 1).
Resolution: I will set the timer on my watch to remind myself to pray the Angelus in the morning, afternoon, and evening today.