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1st Week of Lent, Thursday

Esther 4:10-12,17-19 / Matthew 7:7-12

Jesus talks about prayer

"Ask and it will be given to you."

Catherine Marshall recommended keeping a list of your special prayer requests— along with the date of each request.
A woman did this and was surprised at the way some requests were answered. For example, one was answered by a change of attitude toward a situation, rather than by a removal of the situation.
In other words, many of our prayers are answered in a way totally different from what we had in mind when we made the request.
The point is that many prayers are answered, but in a way so different
from what we expected that we often fail to recognize the answer.
What kind of faith do we have in Jesus’ promise, “Ask and it will be given to you’?
Our prayers are often answered not in the way we thought they should be, but in the way a loving Father saw fit. (ML)

It is really intriguing how we can often evade the truth and the reality.

For e.g., we may have heard of cases about other people, or even of ourselves, of how we manage to side-step the reality of the situation.

We may have a peculiar physical pain and yet we try to self-medicate and to numb it, only to be afflicted later with a serious illness. We may laugh at the ostrich for burying its head in the sand to avoid facing the reality and the truth. But are we not often like that? We don't want to look, hear or know.

In the 1st reading, Queen Esther could have just ignored the impending annihilation of her people and just cared about her own survival.

But she knew that to do such a treacherous deed would be to deny her faith and reject any possibility of God's intervention.

Also, to do that would bring about disastrous consequences for her.

In the gospel, Jesus challenges us to question and to search for the meaning of our lives, as well as to examine our lives.

To have no questions about our lives and about our faith may mean that we might be like an ostrich who does not want to see the reality and the truth of our lives.

Yet God will always be asking us about our lives. He will be searching for us when we are lost. He will be knocking on the door of our hearts waiting for us to open to Him.

Let us pull our heads and our hearts out of the sand and look at God and hear His voice. (SY)