Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Praying the Rosary

"You always leave the Rosary for later, and you end up not saying it at all because you are sleepy. If there is no other time, say it in the street without letting anybody notice it. It will, moreover, help you to have presence of God."
--St. Josemaria Escriva
St. Josemaria is one of those saints who I turn to because I know everything he says is applicable to everyone in just about every situation one might possibly find. Right now it applies to a lazy college student who spends too much time attached to electronic devices or in interactions that are wholesome and worthwhile among his neighbors but without enough time spend in prayer.

We are all called to do the work of God, opus Dei. So why do we put it off for the end of the day? Why do we put it off for the times when we know that God is our only recourse, and by that I mean times of suffering and hardship. God is our only recourse at any moment, day in and day out for good comes only between some cooperation between grace and human freedom that is immeasurable, meaning He is the only cause of our salvation.

Joseph Ratzinger in Introduction to Christianity, following the thought of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, wonders the same thing. Without dispensing of the need to find and follow God during our times of crisis, Ratzinger exhorts us to always remember God and give thanks to God in times of prosperity. Give thanks to the Lord for He is good, for his mercy endures forever says the Psalmist. In him all things were made, and nothing was made that without him was made (Jn. 1:3).

So then how do we reach God? Through prayer, of course, through dialogue with Him. In our private devotions it is most important to pray the Holy Rosary, for who better to reach out to Our Lord than the Blessed Lady, conceived without Sin, who carried Him for nine months, who raised Him, and saw Him die on the Cross? Everything of His came through her. Our Lady was honored by Our Lord in the fullness of time, for she was redeemed from the bonds of original sin in virtue of His Incarnation that was to come, and she is held in the highest esteem by the angels. "Hail, full of grace! The Lord is with thee!" After she fell asleep and departed this life, Our Lady was brought into Heaven. "And a great sign appeared in heaven: A woman clothed with the sun, and the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars."

"Prayer is powerful beyond limits when we turn to the Immaculata who is queen even of God's heart," as St. Maximilian Kolbe said, and above all our Queen is the Mother of Mercy, our life, our sweetness, and our hope.

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