Daily Thought For August 3, 2018

Fruitful Prayer
God wants us to be his instruments for making his redemptive work present in the midst of secular tasks, in ordinary life. But how can we be good instruments of God if we do not ourselves really cherish our life of piety, if we do not really have a personal relationship with Christ in prayer? Can a blind man lead a blind man? Will they not both fall into a pit? The apostolate is the fruit of love for Christ. It is He who is the Light with which we are to give light, the Truth that we must teach, the Life that we have to communicate. And this will only be possible if we are men and women who are united to God through prayer. It is moving to see how, in the midst of so much apostolic activity, Our Lord gets up early in the morning, a great while before day, to talk to his Father God, and to entrust the new day to him, a day that will be full of attention to particular souls. 
We must imitate him. It is in prayer, in talking to Jesus, that we learn to understand, to remain cheerful, to welcome and to appreciate the people God places in our path. Without prayer, the Christian would be like a plant without roots. Such a plant quickly dries up, and cannot bear any fruit. Throughout our day we can and we must speak very frequently to God. He is not far away. He is close to us, beside us. He always hears us, but more especially at those times - such as this .....; that we dedicate expressly to speaking to him, without remaining anonymous, in person-to-person contact with him. According to the measure in which we make ourselves open to God's demands, our day will become supernaturally effective and we will find it easier not to interrupt our dialogue with Jesus. It can truly be said that our apostolic life is worth what our prayer is worth. 
Prayer is always fruitful. It is capable of sustaining our whole life. It is from prayer that we will obtain the strength to face up to difficulties with the assurance and equanimity of the children of God. We will obtain that perseverance - constancy in our friendship - that all apostolate needs. This is why our friendship with Christ has to grow deeper and more sincere each day. This is why we must seriously make up our minds to avoid any deliberate sin, to keep our hearts for God alone, to try to get rid of the those useless thoughts which often leave the way open for faults and sins. We need frequently to rectify our intention, directing our whole being and all our works to God. 
It may sometimes happen that we have to struggle against discouragement, which can make us think that we are not improving in our personal prayer. If this should happen, it is then easy for the devil to tempt us to give up prayer. We must never give it up, even if we are tired and cannot give it all our attention, even though we don't experience any affections at all, even though (without our wanting it) we find we are very distracted. Our prayer is the mainstay of our life and the irreplaceable condition for doing any apostolate. 
From In Conversation with God by Francis Fernandez Volume 3 pp.17-18

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