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Thursday, March 13, 2003

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Esther C:12, 14-16, 23-25
Psalm 138
Matthew 7:7-12

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the importance of lent, prayer, and eternal life

"Queen Esther, seized with mortal anguish, likewise had recourse to the Lord." —Esther C:12

When Esther prayed, it was a matter of life and death not only for her but also for all her people. When we pray, it is even more important, for our prayer is a matter of everlasting life or death.

We are saved from damnation, Satan, and hell by loving the Lord with all our hearts (Lk 10:27) and by totally giving our lives to Him. Yet how can we love and trust the Lord totally unless we get to know Him? How can we know Him without communicating with Him, that is, without prayer? Thus, prayer is a matter of everlasting life or death. Consequently, there is "the necessity of praying always and not losing heart" (Lk 18:1). Therefore, "ask, and you will receive. Seek, and you will find. Knock, and it will be opened to you" (Mt 7:7).

Lent is a time to be renewed in prayer. If we have not prayed as we should have, we must repent of any prayerlessness in our lives. Are we praying at home, on the streets, and at church? Are we praying with our spouses, families, brothers and sisters in Christ, and by ourselves? Are we breaking new ground in prayer? Are we going beyond our comfort-zone in prayer by taking up crosses of prayer? "We do not know how to pray as we ought; but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us" (Rm 8:26). This Lent, let the Holy Spirit revive your prayer so that you will know, love, and trust the Lord totally and receive eternal life.

Prayer:  Father, teach me the importance of prayer by teaching me the meaning of life.

Promise:  "If you, with all your sins, know how your children what is good, how much more will your heavenly Father give good things to anyone who asks Him!" —Mt 7:11

Praise:  Many families across several states prayed for young Teddy as he battled leukemia. Now he is in remission.

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, August 1, 2002

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, August 7, 2002