CONVERSION PRAYER

Lent 35 ~ Water for the Rocks

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Prayer to St. Raphael, Archangel

Glorious archangel, St. Raphael, great prince of the heavenly court, illustrious by thy gifts of wisdom and grace, guide of travelers by land and sea, consoler of the unfortunate and refuge of sinners, I entreat thee to help me in all my needs and in all the trials of this life, as you did once assist the young Tobias in his journeying. And since thou art the “physician of God,” I humbly pray thee to heal my soul of its many infirmities and my body of the ills that afflict it, if this favor is for my greater good. I ask, especially, for angelic purity, that I may be made fit to be the living temple of the Holy Ghost.

          There’s a prayer generator I access every day after I’ve done my Bible Readings for the day. It’s an avenue God often uses to get my scattered attention – and He did again, today. Over two days, I drew prayers to be prayed to the Archangel Raphael; the one I drew today, gave me pause.

          Today, an unexpected skirmish with a family member upset me. Unexpected as it was, it was just one of many I’ve had with this person and I was so tired of it all. I flew straight to God’s heart and I vented mightily there. But by late evening, the annoyance was still stinging and I conceded that something more was needed.

          Emerging from the cave and standing on the ridge, I called out for all my saint-friends, calling each one by name. I had a feeling that I was missing some humility but I wanted to be completely truthful as well. So, I expressed my frustration to them, holding nothing back. I told the Communion of Saints, including the Archangels, that I felt like giving up on this family member; but I ended by quietly asking that I be shown my sin as well in this tug-of-war, in case it was I who was in the wrong.

          There was no denying that all I wanted was to turn away and stop caring even as I knew that giving up on this person and walking away was not God’s way. Yet, wounds in a heart can be like rocks strewn across the path of an already tattered and mottled human will, making it a struggle to love, to forgive and to persevere.  

Blood and Water that gushed out from the Heart of Jesus as a fount of Mercy for me,

I trust in Thee.

          Still, as afternoon rains began to press their silver~pearls into a waiting earth, my heart slowly fell into peace in the ensuing hours. Busy once more with work and studies, the morning’s squabble retreated quietly to the sidelines of my consciousness.

Until I drew St Raphael and realised that it was the second time since yesterday.

And spied the words my heart had missed before,

consoler of the unfortunate and refuge of sinners,

in all the trials of this life, 

physician of God,

I humbly pray thee to heal my soul of its many infirmities 

                  

          Even as God saw my hurt, He also saw my need for healing.

          And so He sent His Angel with Water from His Sacred Side, to break and dislodge the rocks within my heart.

Lent 32 ~ Always Heard and Answered

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The prayer most pleasing to Me is prayer for the conversion of sinners. Know, My daughter, that this prayer is always heard and answered.   ~  Jesus to St Faustina Kowalska, Diary, Divine Mercy in My Soul, Entry 1397

          It is never an easy thing for me to pray for someone’s conversion. If it does come easily, it is because I have not suffered at this person’s hands, the pain of their darkness not having pierced me.

Remember O Christian soul, that thou has this day…   ~  St Augustine

          Today, hearing about someone who had hurt a friend at work, I had the choice to choose between anger or to pray for the other person’s conversion. Of course, I sought the flames first. But as the fire caught the field, I sensed a tiny bud open its petals ever so slightly in the depths of my spirit.

Pray for his conversion

          And so I did, this time falling more easily into an old, mystical prayer which promises conversion when it is prayed from roots of contrition and faith,

O Blood and Water that gushed forth from the heart of Jesus, as a fount of mercy for us, I trust in You.

By the Roots

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Certain little voluntary attachments of self-love must be cut through, and then we must dig round them, and then remove the earth, till we get down deep enough to find the place where they are rooted and interlaced together.   ~   St. Philip Neri

 

          Two nights ago, waiting for sleep to claim me, I began to recite the Blood and Water prayer. I pictured my place of work and began to pray over it.

          As I did, the someone’s face came to me.  Someone who annoys me occasionally in the way she dispenses her duty – which affects all of us. A surge of anger shot through me as I recalled some unfairness she had meted out to some of us through tardiness in her work. As I was dwelling on it and seething a bit, a different mist began to rise off the centre.

         In that mist, I saw only my sin – in the way I become angry with people. In a split second, I went from anger against my colleague to riveted attention on my wrong.

          All the while, in the background, I was dimly aware of

Blood and Water

Heart of Jesus

Have Mercy on me.

          In that unexpected shifting, I didn’t feel the thrust of remorse, nor of guilt. But what I did feel was a firm, quiet intent to make amends for that wrong. Nothing else mattered.

          And so I did.

          I pictured my anger. And a quiet little prayer found my heart,

Lord, pull it out,

Pull it out by the roots.

          In the remaining days of this aging October of winds and rising swells of seas, on this Feast day of St. Jude who once told me to seal within his heart those I had previously wept over and prayed for and to now Pray for others, I am called to turn inwards and clean.

          Rid my inner abode of old roots.