How is our prayer?
The revelation of prayer in the economy of salvation
teaches us that faith rests on God’s action in history. Our filial trust
is enkindled by his supreme act
the Passion and Resurrection of
his Son. Christian prayer is cooperation with his providence, his
plan of love for men.
For St. Paul, this trust is bold, founded on the prayer of
the Spirit in us and on the faithful love of the Father who has given
us his only Son.
Transformation of the praying heart is the first
response to our petition.
The prayer of Jesus makes Christian prayer an efficacious
petition. He is its model, he prays in us and with us. Since the heart of
the Son seeks only what pleases the Father, how could the prayer of
the children of adoption be centered on the gifts rather than the
Jesus also prays for us—in our place and on our behalf. All
our petitions were gathered up, once for all, in his cry on the Cross
and, in his Resurrection, heard by the Father. This is why he never
ceases to intercede for us with the Father.
If our prayer is reso
lutely united with that of Jesus, in trust and boldness as children,
we obtain all that we ask in his name, evenmore than any particular
thing: the Holy Spirit himself, who contains all gifts.
“Pray constantly . . . always and for everything giving
thanks in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God the Father.”
St. Paul adds, “Pray at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and
supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance making
supplication for all the saints.”
For “we have not been com
manded to work, to keep watch and to fast constantly, but it has
been laid down that we are to pray without ceasing.”
fervor can come only from love. Against our dullness and laziness,
the battle of prayer is that of humble, trusting, and persevering
This love opens our hearts to three enlightening and life-giving
facts of faith about prayer.
5:7; 7:25; 9:24.
35 Evagrius Ponticus,
49: PG 40, 1245C.