Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time
by Fr. Ivan Olmo

“Praise the Lord, who heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.”  The gospels often speak to us about Jesus rising very early in the morning, even before dawn, to find a quiet, deserted place without noise or distraction to pray and quietly be with the Father.  It is at the heart of who Jesus is. His identity, his nature, the core of his being to be in union with the Father always and in all things.  The priority of Jesus is to relate and remain with the Father in and during every thought, word, miracle or ministry.  Jesus was in prayer with the Father prior to any thought, during every conversation on earth, after every miracle in Cana and throughout his ministry in Galilee, Jesus remained in prayer and communion with the Father.  Prayer permits us the distinct privilege of relating our true and inmost thoughts, words, feelings and desires to the Father.  Not watered down or diminished by pride or fear, not reduced or inflated by ego or misconceptions, not left out or disguised by hurt or impatience but every thought, feeling and desire is heard and related to the Father as it really is without alloy or pretense.  God sees and hears the real you.  If we pray like Jesus, if we join the prayer with Jesus, if we listen and learn to how Jesus prays and speaks to the Father, we can learn who we really are and become our true self in and through prayer.  The kind of prayer, which is eager and hungry like Jesus to rise very early in the morning, even before dawn, with the deepest desire to pray and remain in prayer with the Father throughout the day and even throughout the night as we sleep. The kind of prayer where God, the Divine Physician, the healer of mind, body and soul hears and reveals our inmost aches and hurts then heals them.  God desires unity with us in and through prayer, revealing himself, sharing himself and relating himself through Jesus.  God desires to be known, to be heard, to be welcomed and received only for our own benefit, to flood us with the truest joy and divine happiness for eternity.  However, like any physician or doctor, our Lord needs your permission to heal and restore you to good health and to his loving friendship.  Imagine God, in his infinite love and divine mercy, needs your permission to treat you well.  How amazingly profound.  We need God’s assistance but we must pray to ask for it.

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