Today’s readings invite us into prayer, into relationship with God. Because relationships feel more natural when we know one another well, Sirach encourages us to know God better. In his wisdom, Sirach tells us what God is like: fair, open-minded, compassionate, and attentive. “The Lord will not delay,” he says. Knowing that God’s help comes right on time, whenever we need it, calms our hearts and helps us trust the Lord. In his second Letter to Timothy, Saint Paul demonstrates his own trust in God. Despite the grueling struggles Saint Paul has faced because of his Christian faith, he praises the Lord for rescuing him time and again. Today’s Gospel draws us close to Jesus too, revealing his special love for the poor and humble. As Jesus tells his parable about the prayer habits of a Pharisee and a tax collector, our hearts long to become as gentle as Christ’s.
WHAT IS TRUTH?
One of the most pitiful moments in Christ’s passion is when Pontius Pilate asks Jesus, “What is truth?” How sad. How bitterly sad to hear Pilate ask that question when he is looking at Truth itself—after all, Jesus is “the way and the truth and the life” (John 14:6). Pilate gazes into the eyes of Truth and doesn’t recognize it. We might wonder whether we are any better at recognizing Jesus in our day. Jesus comes to us in truth, goodness, and beauty. He comes to us in the poor. Jesus shows himself in the awkward, unloved, and frustrating people in our lives. Do we recognize him? Do we accept him? And what does this mean for our prayer lives?
HUMILITY IN PRAYER
Prayer begins with humility. St. Teresa of Ávila championed humility as the only way to advance in prayer. For her, humility is the same thing as truth. Humility means accepting the truth about God, ourselves, and others. So if we want to pray, we must ask the Lord to show us the truth. We begin by recalling the glorious truth that God creates us out of nothing, simply for love. Recognizing God as our loving creator helps us encounter the Lord in prayer just as Jesus proposes: “the one who humbles himself will be exalted.”
Our prayer will energize us and give us life when we begin in humility. We can say, “You are God, and I am not. I come to you in prayer because anything I need can come only from you.” This kind of prayer leads us to gratitude too, as Saint Paul demonstrates. His words to Timothy might sound prideful: “I have competed well; I have finished the race; I have kept the faith.” On the contrary, Saint Paul simply accepts the truth about himself. He has accomplished nothing without Christ’s help. “To him be glory forever and ever,” he exclaims. Amen!
Today’s Readings: Sir 35:12–14, 16–18; Ps 34:2–3, 17–19, 23; 2 Tm 4:6–8, 16–18; Lk 18:9–14
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Also in this bulletin:
- All Souls Day Nov 2
- Safe Environment Classes October and November
- Coats for Kids at Bethlehem Center
- Prayers before Election
- Congratulations Guadalupanas
- Community Rosary
- Boy Scout Sales
- Seasons of Hope Remembrance
- Spanish Evangelization Retreat