Pray without ceasing.
(1 Thes 5:17)
Sometimes we confuse what God wants with what we think God wants or expects from us.
Take prayer, for example. It’s disappointing when you try to pray but all you do is doze off. You might wonder after waking, What must God think of that poor effort? Why did I even bother?
In those times when, by our standards, we find cause for discouragement, the saints discover a reason to hope all the more. Saint Thérèse of Lisieux insists:
I should be desolate for having slept . . . during my hours of prayer and my thanksgivings after Holy Communion; well, I am not desolate. I remember that little children are as pleasing to their parents when they are asleep as well as when they are wide awake; I remember, too, that when they perform operations, doctors put their patients to sleep. Finally, I remember that: ‘The Lord knows our weakness, that he is mindful that we are but dust and ashes’ (Ps 102:14).
To hope without ceasing is to pray without ceasing.
Photo by Fr. Lawrence Lew, O.P. (used with permission)