Inspired by St. Francis, the following mini-homily is directed to a congregation of one: me.
When we are enslaved by obsessive desires, we are not free to pray. When our interest in power, money and material things is greater than our longing for God, we are still far from authentic prayer. The deeper we journey into prayer the less interested we are in thoughts rooted in worldly desires and sensory perceptions.
Our prayer should be dressed in reverence and humility, unsoiled by a mind still cluttered, impassioned and impure. Calm the restlessness of your mind by mindfulness of your breathing and by acts of compassion and mercy. The altar of our spirit should be unadorned and free of false and unhealthy desires. We must imitate God who stoops down in mercy to touch us. So we too must stoop down in mercy to touch others…even those who live far away.
The spiritual life is a twofold journey…an inward movement to the depths of our being and the source of Love and an outward movement to the broken world, the margins of society, where love is manifested in acts of kindness.