Father Patrick Langan, LC
Jesus said to his disciples: "Whoever has
my commandments and observes them is the one who loves
me. And whoever loves me will be loved by
my Father, and I will love him and reveal
myself to him." Judas, not the Iscariot, said to him,
"Master, then what happened that you will reveal yourself
to us and not to the world?" Jesus answered
and said to him, "Whoever loves me will keep my
word, and my Father will love him, and we
will come to him and make our dwelling with
him. Whoever does not love me does not keep my
words; yet the word you hear is not mine
but that of the Father who sent me. I have
told you this while I am with you. The
Advocate, the holy Spirit that the Father will send in
my name-- he will teach you everything and remind
you of all that I told you."
Lord, thank you for granting me the opportunity
to be with you. There are things in life, Lord,
that attract me, but you attract me more. I
hope in you, and I love you. Maybe I don’t
really understand what it means to love, and maybe
I don’t love the way I should, but I
do love you.
Petition: Lord, a lot of images distract
me. Help me do something about this.
1. The Danger: It
is easy to forget you, Lord, especially with all
the images that are around me. Every image I harbor
in my heart, every emotion I abandon myself to
leaves its mark. These can come from the radio,
the Internet, songs, novels… anywhere. They seem to swamp my
mind and make it easier to forget you. These
images and emotions can also impoverish, degrade, limit and
reduce my ability to extract from life its magnificent
content, usefulness and happiness. You remind me that I should
use everything only in as much as it helps
me to reach you, my final goal.
2. The Gift: On
the other hand, I know you have sent us the
gift of the Holy Spirit. As you promise in
this Gospel, he will never stop reminding me of you.
All I have to do is let his projector
fill my imagination with images, with thoughts, with insights.
Of course, I also have to use the world’s media
correctly and in moderation. Holy Spirit, I know you
are near; take possession of my soul and make
it all your own. Guide my every decision so that
I choose what is right and reject what is
3. Accepting the Gift: When I do forget, the Holy
Spirit will remind me of all that Christ has
said. All of the emotions and thoughts you inspire,
Holy Spirit, will enrich my ability to live enthusiastically and
forcefully. You will fill my mind with great and
powerful images. All I have to do is open
myself to you.
“The habitual difficulty in prayer is distraction.
[…] To set about hunting down distractions would be to
fall into their trap, when all that is necessary
is to turn back to our heart: for a
distraction reveals to us what we are attached to, and
this humble awareness before the Lord should awaken our
preferential love for him and lead us resolutely to
offer him our heart to be purified. Therein lies the
battle, the choice of which master to serve” (Catechism
of the Catholic Church, n. 2729).
Christ: Lord, I have the option of letting myself
be consumed with thoughts of anger, lust and power—thoughts that
will make me grow old and become a more
intense version of myself, closed in on myself. Help
me take the steps to avoid these temptations. Allow the
Holy Spirit to animate my mind and my soul.
Resolution: I will clear my mind by filling my
thoughts with God and his things.