Daily Readings Reflection for 10/08/09

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Reflection on the Daily Readings for 10/08/09 by Fr. Bertrand Buby, SM

Today’s Readings

Scripture: Lectionary # 464. Malachai 3:13-20. Psalm 1:1-2.3.4.6. Luke
11:5-13:

“How much more with the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who
ask Him?”  What an encouraging conclusion from the Gospel for today (Luke
11:13).  This is supporting our desire to pray with persistence when it
comes to being a disciple of Jesus.  It follows the selection of yesterday
which spoke of Jesus’ teaching the disciples how to pray while giving them
the Our Father or the version that Luke has, “Father, hallowed be thy
name.”  Here we see that Jesus is giving us the greatest of all gifts, in
fact, in our Catholic Tradition, the Holy Spirit is the giver of all gifts
including the special seven gifts of the Holy Spirit.  As believers in the
Risen Christ we look upon his exclamatory question and see in it a
Trinitarian theme. the Father will give the Spirit while Jesus is the one
to proclaim that this is what our prayer can bring about. Jesus, as the Son
of the Father, encourages us to ask the Father and He will certainly give
us the gift of the Holy Spirit.  Asking, knocking at the door of heaven is
preceded by the striking parable of the person who comes at night banging
on the householder’s door while asking for some bread.  Because of the
persistence of the beggar, the owner gets up form his cozy bed and goes
down and gives the person the nourishment he needs. It is as simple as
that. This leads Jesus to develop further the theme of prayer while
following up on the example of prayer that he gave us in the Lord’s Prayer.

Knocking on the door of heaven has to be done with perseverance and
deliberateness.  The heavens are opened and the Father, Son, and Spirit
answer our needs when done with faith of the heart and love of God. We know
the Trinity lives from all eternity in peace, joy, and love and each of the
Divine Persons wishes that these gifts be ours.  We need, however, to
petition, that is, to ask and to knock on the door.  Doesn’t Jesus
reinforce this in another writing of the New Testament? “Behold, I stand at
the door and knock. If anyone listens to my voice and opens the door to me,
I will permit him to sit with me upon my throne; as I also have overcome
and have sat with my Father on his throne.  He who has an ear, let him hear
what the Spirit says to the churches.” (Rev. 3:20-22). Notice again the
mention of the Father, Spirit, and the Son who speaks to us asking us to
open the door of our heart through faith, hope, and love the trinity of
virtues that unites us to the Trinity of Persons.

So when we read the parable of the importunate event of someone knocking on
the door in the middle of the night, we can see that Jesus is teaching us
to be disciples who keep on trying till the door is opened to us through
our persistent prayer.   The deeper meaning of the passage comes after the
parable which acts like a commercial for the gift of deep and persistent
prayer.  We are encouraged not to stop praying  but to persevere. The
householder will open the door for us and feed us with the heavenly food as
well as give us our daily bread. Amen.

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