29th Sunday in Ordinary Time
by Fr. Ivan Olmo
“Jesus told his disciples to pray always without becoming weary.” Are you a follower of Jesus? Are you a faithful follower? Do you follow him with a sense of abandonment, surrender and obedience? Can you follow him without a sense of materialism, division or regret? Jesus is the one we follow. He is the whole truth, the only truth and nothing but the real truth of how much God truly loves you. Are you willing to follow Jesus with a renewed sense of urgency, importance and to value the One who is your life, the sacred breath in your heart, the true food you eat and the blessing cup you drink? Following Jesus means being obedient to God and faithful to his will. Following Jesus means denying yourself, giving up control, and remaining silent in the midst of persecution. It means hating sin but loving the sinner. Following Jesus means nurturing intimacy with God through prayer and preferring prayer over television, food, social media. A faithful follower of Jesus recognizes, understands and accepts that prayer is not optional but just as necessary as the oxygen we breathe and the nutrients we take in for prayer satisfies the hungry soul and nourishes the faithful heart. Prayer is being involved in the life of Jesus. Prayer is participating in divine grace. Prayer is experiencing the loving presence of God. In prayer, God communicates his very self, he touches the depth of our being, he provides words that are encouraging, inspiring, correcting. To not pray, is to reject God and all he has to offer. To say you are too busy to pray, is to prefer something else over God. To not want to pray, is to not want God, to refuse his gifts, to suggest you can live without God and presumes your relationship with him. To not pray, is to not know God and how can anyone love and serve the God they do not know? When Jesus was tired and weary, he prayed with the Father. When he was discerning God’s will or was faced with a difficult or important decision, he went to be with the Father in prayer. When he was in agony, he prayed. When he expressed joy and thanksgiving, he prayed. He taught his disciples to pray and they taught us the importance of maintaining a relationship with God in prayer. Mary teaches us to turn to Jesus in every situation and circumstance and ask him for what we need in prayer. Therefore, be a faithful follower of Jesus and pray always.