“Lord, I don’t know how to pray!”

You write: ‘To pray is to talk with God. But about what?’ About what? About Him, about yourself: joys, sorrows, successes and failures, noble ambitions, daily worries, weaknesses! And acts of thanksgiving and petitions: and Love and reparation. In a word: to get to know him and to get to know yourself: ‘to get acquainted!’ – St Josemaria, The Way

How should we pray? I would go as far as to say, without fear of being mistaken, that there are many, countless, ways of praying. But I would like all of us to pray genuinely, as God’s children, not gabbling away like hypocrites who will hear from Jesus’ lips ‘Not everyone who says to me, “Lord, Lord!” shall enter into the kingdom of heaven’ (Matt 7:21). People who live by hypocrisy can perhaps achieve ‘the sound of prayer’, says St Augustine, ‘but they cannot possess its voice, because there is no life in them’ (St Augustine, Commentaries on Psalms, 139,10 (PL 37,1809)). They lack the desire to fulfill the Father’s Will. When we cry ‘Lord!’ we must do so with an effective desire to put into practice the inspirations the Holy Spirit awakens in our soul…

I have never tired of talking about prayer and with God’s grace I never will. I remember back in the thirties, as a young priest, people of all kinds used to come to me looking for ways of getting closer to Our Lord. To all of them, university students and workers, healthy and sick, rich and poor, priests and laymen, I gave the same advice: ‘Pray’. If any one replied, ‘I don’t even know how to begin’, I would advise him to put himself in God’s presence and tell Him of his desires and his anxiety, with that very same complaint: ‘Lord, I don’t know how to pray!’ Often, humble admissions like that were the beginning of an intimate relationship with Christ, a lasting friendship with him.

– St Josemaria, Friends of God

Prières

Père éternel, tu nous fais découvrir les splendeurs de ton royaume par la vie de ton Fils Jésus-Christ. Béni soit ton saint Nom sur la terre comme au ciel. Que toute ma vie soit le reflet de ta gloire qui se traduit en œuvre d’amour et de miséricorde.

Seigneur Jésus, donne-moi de boire à ta coupe, pour avoir part à ton royaume. Donne-moi de vaincre les intentions mauvaises, les ambitions et les espoirs égoïstes, pour redresser mon chemin sur un sentier de justice.

Ô Jésus, par le souffle de l’Esprit, éclaire nos cœurs pour reconnaître ce qui importe réellement dans la vie. Éblouis de ton amour, mon Jésus, donne-moi de me détacher dans mon cœur de toute inquiétude qui ne soit pas la gloire de Dieu et délivre-moi du péché.