Step by Step Retreats

5. RESPOND TO GOD! PRAY LIKE JESUS!

 

"Respond in any way you choose or feel moved to respond. Be genuinely yourself and respond honestly, freely, spontaneously, reverently.

Speak what is in your heart; say what you feel, even when you feel like complaining. Remember that when you don't know what to say, the Holy Spirit prays in you and for you. Just speaking or whispering "Abba" or "Jesus", or "Holy Spirit" or "Thank You" or :I love you, too" rhythmically with your breathing; or repeating words of praise and thanks, are profoundly prayerful responses...

 

 

CONTEMPLATIVE PRAYER, YOU SEE, IS MORE LISTENING TO, AND BEING AWARE OF GOD OUR FATHER AND OF JESUS AND THEIR SPIRIT RATHER THAN SAYING OR DOING ANYTHING. IT IS MORE SOMETHING GOD DOES FOR US THAN ANYTHING WE DO FOR GOD. IT IS CONSCIOUSLY BEING WITH HIM AND LETTING HIM BE GOD, THE LOVING FATHER HE IS; LETTING HIM AND JESUS FILL US WITH THEIR HOLY SPIRIT AND LETTNG JESUS BECOME MORE AND MORE REAL AND ALIVE FOR US. "(Fr. Nigro)

The Holy Spirit, who will teach us how to pray if we ask, will reveal the prayer of Jesus to one's heart. The Holy Spirit will respond with loving understanding to God from the depth of our being and will change all the forms of prayer we learnt until now for something new.


"Remember that Jesus said on the cross: "Forgive them, Father, as they do not know what they are doing". His hospitality and his benevolence were equal for everybody. He received with love and compassion even the sick, the sinners, the paralyzed, the prostitutes, the ones that would sell Him. During the night, he isolated in Nature's loneliness to pray and full of love often murmured like a child: "Avva", that means "Father"… Maybe now, this image does not correspond to the realities of this world at all. This is why, I preferred to tell you nothing, to use no image and to wait that Holy Ghost gives you the feelings and the secret knowledge that Jesus Christ had; thus, this unique word "Avva" will not just come out of your lips but from the depths of your heart. Only then will you truly understand what secret prayer and hesychast meditation are." (Fr. Leloup)

Scripture:

"At that time Jesus said in reply, "I give praise to you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, for although you have hidden these things from the wise and the learned you have revealed them to the childlike. Yes, Father, such has been your gracious will… Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will find rest for your selves. For my yoke is easy, and my burden light." (cf. Mt 11-25-30)