In Prayer, be totally present to Jesus.

I’ve written many reflections on silence and on the inner life. It is difficult to cultivate this inner life of prayer unless the one praying (you or me) is totally present to Jesus. You can move your lips but if your thoughts are on a whole differing subject, that prayer is not genuine. Prayer is communication, talking to God, to the Virgin Mother, or to a Saint we are praying to for intercession. Just as in a conversation face-to-face, one is expected to look at the other person, and “be present” to him or her. We always long for Jesus, when he talks to us, to be present, and He IS. Too bad we don’t pay attention so that we feel His presence when he talks to us.

In another reflection, I mentioned that He does not talk to us. Well, thinking about that, I find that is not entirely accurate. He talks to us not with speech but in passing to us, to our conscious mind His inspirations. It’s when you pray or ponder on a situation, you hear His advice with the ear of our soul, a quick inspiration. It’s hard to explain, but it most assuredly happens.

It happens to me a lot, particularly when I am thinking about a situation involving lack of empathy for the other person. I tend to be rather dry, that is, to speak without emotion. That’s not necessarily bad but I perceive the inspiration afterwards that if I had said this or that, the person I was talking to would be better served. Most of the time, especially in these days of very rapid conversation, there isn’t much time to choose one’s words carefully and more charitably. One of the reasons why I despise this very rapid talk these days. Like compressing 300 words in half the time it normally takes to express an idea. Listen to a report on TV, if you can stand it to begin with, and you get the idea.

Getting back to Jesus, you don’t need to talk so fast. He can hear you. It is rather remarkable that with so many people praying to Jesus at the same time, He can hear us all. He can! He answers prayers, too.

May He bless you and keep you!

Fred Schaeffer, OFS
May 19, 2017


A Gift of a New Life
A Biography
by Fred Schaeffer, OFS 2019

Secular Franciscan Order
Ordo Franciscanus Sæcularis

Divine Mercy Fraternity

Vero Beach, FL


Term expires: 2/10/2022

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