Thursday, August 9, 2018

Youcat commented through CCC – Question n. 508 – Part II.

YOUCAT Question n. 508 - Part II. What happens if you do not feel anything when you pray or even experience reluctance to pray?

(Youcat answer repeated) Distractions during prayer, the feeling of interior emptiness and dryness, indeed, even an aversion to prayer are experienced by everyone who prays. Then to persevere faithfully is itself already a prayer.   

A deepening through CCC

(CCC 2729) The habitual difficulty in prayer is distraction. It can affect words and their meaning in vocal prayer; it can concern, more profoundly, him to whom we are praying, in vocal prayer (liturgical or personal), meditation, and contemplative prayer. To set about hunting down distractions would be to fall into their trap, when all that is necessary is to turn back to our heart: for a distraction reveals to us what we are attached to, and this humble awareness before the Lord should awaken our preferential love for him and lead us resolutely to offer him our heart to be purified. Therein lies the battle, the choice of which master to serve (Cf. Mt 6:21, 24).     

Reflecting and meditating 

(Youcat comment) Even St. Thérèse of Lisieux for a long time could not sense God’s love at all. Shortly before her death she was visited one night by her sister Celine. She noticed that Thérèse’s hands were clasped together. “What are you doing? You should try to sleep”, Celine said. “I cannot. I am suffering too much. But I am praying”, Thérèse replied. “And what do you say to Jesus?” “I do not say anything to him. I love him.”

(CCC Comment)

(CCC 2736) Are we convinced that "we do not know how to pray as we ought"? (Rom 8:26). Are we asking God for "what is good for us"? Our Father knows what we need before we ask him (Cf. Mt 6:8), but he awaits our petition because the dignity of his children lies in their freedom. We must pray, then, with his Spirit of freedom, to be able truly to know what he wants (Cf. Rom 8:27).    

(The next question is: Isn’t praying a flight from reality?)

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