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Wednesday, October 31, 2007

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Romans 8:26-30
Psalm 13
Luke 13:22-30

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"The Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in speech." —Romans 8:26

Most of us feel we don't know how to pray as we ought (Rm 8:26). We feel weak in prayer (Rm 8:26). We wish our prayer would be deeper, more life-changing, and more powerful. Like the apostles, we wish Jesus would teach us to pray (Lk 11:1).

The Holy Spirit was sent by the Father and Jesus to help us in our weakness. He strengthens us in prayer by making "intercession for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in speech" (Rm 8:26). The Spirit teaches us, as His temples, to groan with Him. These groanings are not expressions of frustration, depression, or selfishness, but expressions of love. The Spirit teaches us how to suffer and love, to groan and pray.

The Spirit teaches us to groan as Jesus groaned. "Some people brought [Jesus] a deaf man who had a speech impediment and begged Him to lay His hand on him" (Mk 7:32). Jesus "looked up to heaven and emitted a groan. He said to him, 'Ephphatha!' (that is, 'Be opened!') At once the man's ears were opened; he was freed from the impediment, and began to speak plainly" (Mk 7:34-35). When Jesus groans, He loves and heals.

Father, Jesus, Holy Spirit, teach us to pray, teach us to groan. Give us the desires of Your heart. Make our groans and hearts like Yours (see Mt 11:29).

Prayer:  Father, make "all things work together for the good of those who love" You (Rm 8:28).

Promise:  "Try to come in through the narrow door." —Lk 13:24

Praise:  Joan prays daily for her children's vocations.

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our tape, Power in the Spirit, on audio tape AV 64-1 or video V-64.)

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Daniel E. Pilarczyk, Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, April 3, 2007

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