Saturday, July 15, 2017

Free from the Burden! (guest post)

Here's the conclusion of a meditation on Psalm 81, verse 7.  Many thanks to Harold Koenig for sharing these thoughts with us. It's been a wonderful example of how daily liturgical prayer, although offered primarily on behalf of, and in union with, the Church universal, will also bring personal gifts from God to the one who prays it. 

Part 3: I relieved you from your burden
I hear a tongue I do not know: I relieved Israel’s shoulder of its burden; they set down the basket.– – –– – after Ps. 81
One reason to pray the office is that it is the work of God, the “opus Dei.” And the work of God, our Lord tells us, is to believe in him who God has sent. Our prayer is a work of faith.
To believe in him whom God has sent is not a matter of assent to certain propositions or articles of faith.  It is to have confidence, to trust. Jesus, whose very name amounts to “God saves,” is to be trusted to save us, to have saved us, to be saving us, to save us at the last day, the great morning.
I reproach myself often for my lack of fervor. I approach the office sometimes in ennui and frustration. I am not very devout, my mind wanders. This little commitment of time to him who deserves all I have and am seems like a huge and empty burden.
Me, me, me!  What foolishness!  He removes the burden from my shoulder and I immediately stoop to pick it up, turn to him irritably, and ask, “Now where were we? Oh yes, talking about me and my inadequacies.”

If you pray, “Lord, open my lips,”  do you think he will leave you mute?  If you cry, “God, come to my assistance!” will he not hasten to help you? Trust him, and the burden will be lifted, the basket of self-criticism set down.