Praying 10 Minutes a Day: First Week/Tuesday

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Here are some reflections you might consider when setting apart 10 minutes to pray today...  time to be still and know that God is near...

In my parish, the Intercessions for Sunday Mass during Lent always include this petition:
For fasting that leads us to prayer
and for prayer that leads us to serve the poor,
let us pray to the Lord...
 "For fasting that leads us to prayer..."  What's the connection here?

Fasting from food or drink, or from other realities I consume in any number of ways, is meant to leave me hungry and thirsty, experiencing a certain emptiness within.  I might experience that emptiness physically or in those places where my mind and heart, my imagination and desire, are accustomed to being regularly "fed."

If I'm always feeling "full" then how can I know for what I hunger and thirst?

"Giving something up for Lent" might help me move towards feeling a little less full than usual and in the emptiness, I might discover a thirst, a hunger I don't always experience.

I live in the first world where Lenten fasting might mean going without chocolate or beer for 40 days.  Although such "fasting" won't leave me actually hungry or thirsty, it might indeed put me in touch with my desires and my dependence on things I really don't need, things that aren't good for me, things that keep me from knowing my heart's true desires...

Perhaps that's how "fasting might lead me to prayer..."  Fasting that begins to unmask my dependence on, even my addiction to creature comforts can free me to discover the hunger and thirst I have for realities much more nourishing and satisfying, filling and lasting...
For fasting that leads us to prayer
and for prayer that leads us to serve the poor,
let us pray to the Lord...
Perhaps today I will pray:
Lord, help me look at all the stuff, all the things
     that so often and easily fill me up...
Lord, unmask for me my dependence on things
     that please my tastes in unhelpful, unhealthy ways...
Lord, give me a taste of your presence, a sip of your peace
     to whet my appetite for you and for what will truly nourish and fill me...

Are you new to "Praying 10 Minutes a Day in Lent" - or are you having trouble getting started?  The first installment offers some thoughts on getting started, as do the subsequent posts in the series.  So take a look and join us!


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