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Sunday Micro Retreat – July 24, 2022

As you begin your time of reflection, try to realize that you are standing on holy ground and in the presence of God who wants to talk to you and listen to you.

Make the Sign of the Cross. The Holy Spirit is opening your heart and mind so the Word of God that you are about to read can flourish in you for God's glory. Pray that you continue to work with his grace. Let the words or your prayer flow from your mind through your heart. Try to "feel" what you are saying.

Is there anything that you would like to ask God at this moment? What graces does your heart desire? Talk to God about it.

Today, we ask for the grace of being able to pray well.

Now read the Sunday's Gospel:

Jesus was praying in a certain place, and after he had finished, one of his disciples said to him, "Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples."

He said to them, "When you pray, say: 'Father, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come. Give us each day our daily bread. And forgive us our sins, for we ourselves forgive everyone indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation.'"

And Jesus said to the disciples, "Suppose one of you has a friend, and you go to him at midnight and say to him, 'Friend, lend me three loaves of bread; for a friend of mine has arrived, and I have nothing to set before him.' And your friend answers from within, 'Do not bother me; the door has already been locked, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot get up and give you anything.'

"I tell you, even though he will not get up and give him anything because he is his friend, at least because of his persistence he will get up and give him whatever he needs.

"So I say to you: Ask, and it will be given you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened for you. For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who searches finds, and for everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.

"Is there any father among you who, if your child asks for a fish, will give the child a snake instead of a fish? Or if the child asks for an egg, will give a scorpion?

"If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!" (Luke 11:1-13)

The Word of God touches everyone differently. If there is anything that really stood out for you in this reading, meditate on it. Go to the depths of your heart and listen to what God is trying to say to you.

Next, let's spend some time with a couple of points that you may consider during this Sunday's Retreat:

1. " Ask, and it will be given you "

The word "Ask" is customarily used for prayer. However, in spite of what people commonly understand, it is not a command or an order given to us, to make us pray, but it is an invitation to prayer.

Thus, this is a good moment for us to review our prayer life and our approach to prayer. Reflect on what stands behind your reasons for prayer: is prayer an "obligation" that you feel like you need to fulfill? Is prayer a time of meeting with the One whom you love? Where is your heart, and where is your mind when you pray? Do you feel like you are being "ordered" to pray or do you feel like you are being "invited" to pray?

2. "Knock, and the door will be opened for you"

The Talmud, the central text of Rabbinic Judaism and the primary source of Jewish religious law, refers to the word "knocking" as being able to pray in such a way that the prayer "knocks" on the gate of God's mercy and that it also "opens" the gate of mercy." Basically, it is a prayer through which a person can experience God's merciful love.

Therefore, reflect on how you understand "God’s merciful love” and what it means specifically for you. Why do you think it is important to “knock on the gate of mercy?” What difference does it make for your spiritual life? For your relationship with God?

You may end this retreat by reading paragraph # 1777 from the “Diary” of St. Faustina Kowalska.

[Jesus said:] My daughter, know that My Heart is mercy itself. From this sea of mercy, graces flow out upon the whole world. No soul that has approached Me has ever gone away unconsoled. All misery gets buried in the depths of My mercy, and every saving and sanctifying grace flows from this fountain. My daughter, I desire that your heart be an abiding place of My mercy. I desire that this mercy flow out upon the whole world through your heart. Let no one who approaches you go away without that trust in My mercy which I so ardently desire for souls. Pray as much as you can for the dying. By your entreaties, obtain for them trust in My mercy, because they have most need of trust, and have it the least. Be assured that the grace of eternal salvation for certain souls in their final moment depends on your prayer. You know the whole abyss of My mercy, so draw upon it for yourself and especially for poor sinners. Sooner would heaven and earth turn into nothingness than would My mercy not embrace a trusting soul.

It is good to keep a personal journal in which reflections that stood out for you are recorded. The outcome of those Sunday Micro Retreats is good material that you can talk about in your spiritual direction.

Christ the King in Ann Arbor Michigan - Luke 11:1-13


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