THE RISKS OF PRAYER
Tuesday of the Twenty-third Week in Ordinary Time
My dear encountered couples:
“Jesus went up to the mountain to pray.” And he prayed not merely for a few moments, but all night. We are told he spent the night in communion with God. Then at daybreak he picked out those who were to be the Twelve Apostles. Judas was among them. What went wrong? Didn’t Jesus pray well enough? Didn’t he commune with God well enough to get the message clearly? How could he make such a big mistake by picking Judas as one of his buddies?
Praying is to move us to discover God’s will and to embrace it, to do our best to carry it out and live it, no matter how much we would prefer to do something else. Prayer is to make us realize that to do God’s will is in the long run the best choice we ever make. And no matter what our feelings are about it we should go ahead and try to do God’s will, or what we think is his will.
In God’s plan it was necessary for his Son to suffer and die. A man named Judas Iscariot was to play a major role in bringing that about. Judas was to be part of that which would save you and me from hell. He was to betray his best friend, Jesus Christ, so that we could become friends of Christ, get God as our Father, and live in heaven with them forever. Jesus knew that.
Prayer made it possible for him to understand that he must include Judas among his apostles. Prayer gave him the courage to do what he knew would bring him pain, even death.
We all have decisions to make. Let us pray to learn God’s will and to receive courage to carry it out, regardless of how we feel. Yes, we need to pray.