Many people feel that they cannot go on and pray “Lord give me the strength to continue.” Prayer opens the heaven: it gives life oxygen; it gives a breath of fresh air even in the midst of breathlessness and lets us see things from a broader perspective… Do I cultivate intimacy with God, dialogue with him, listen to his word? Among the many things we do each day, let us not neglect prayer; let us dedicate time to it, let us use short invitations to be repeated often, let us read the gospel every day. The prayer that opens the heaven.Pope Francis Angelus January 9, 2022
Hope is a virtue to cultivate. Just like faith and love, hope must be cultivated. It begins in childhood. Hope rests in part on the belief that nothing is impossible for God and that the victory is already won, no matter how messy things can be on this side of heaven. As I cultivate the virtue of hope, those around me will see it in what I say and do. The heavens open up.
Through prayer, I realize my need for mercy, I cling to my littleness and rely on God‘s greatness. I fall deeper in love, truly smitten with God’s goodness. My human weaknesses and shortcomings are revealed to me, the parts I’ve tried to avoid. This is the path to greater love and wholeness, my future of hope. I am invited to explore the darkness, realizing it is not so bad and that there is always a distant light to provide me comfort. Lord, you show me Your mercy and kindness and You teach me how to do the same for myself. To explore and know the whole of me, You invite me into your holiness. I become an instrument of Your peace, living Your glory throughout my day with hope and knowing your goodness.
For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.Jeremiah 29:1
Thank you, Lord, calling me to the virtue of hope and to being smitten with Your goodness.