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Minute Meditations

Hope Is a Grace from God

Hope is not simply a saving emotion. It is also a theological virtue. Unlike a natural virtue with which one is born, hope is a grace from God that helps one trust there is life beyond the funeral, the loss of treasured possessions, or the rights and privileges one is denied. It sometimes strikes like lightning in silent moments of prayer and emboldens one to walk through the fiery furnace with a confidence and assurance never before experienced. At other times, it is planted in the cracks of broken dreams and cultivated over a period of time by the words, presence and actions of others.

—from Instruments of Christ: Reflections on the Peace Prayer of Saint Francis of Assisi

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Prayer Will Change Us

Those who seek God along the path of Franciscan prayer are to be transformed by the one they seek, the one they claim to love. Prayer centered on relationship with Christ, the Word of God incarnate, cannot help but change the life of the believer and the way one lives. Those who enter into Franciscan prayer, therefore, must be ready for change; they each must be willing to become “another Christ,” for this is where the path of prayer leads, to a new birth of Christ in the lives of the believers.

—from Franciscan Prayer

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Discover the Wonder of Play

One of the most valuable seeds of life is the seed of play! But it is also the most neglected. Play includes all the things that energize life. This is the seed of the senses. Through our magnificent body we experience the world and things that delight us. We know God created the universe with pure brilliance! God breathed life into creatures, and the result is marvelous. How often do we spend time in pure delight with one another and creation, devoid of any agenda? Play is invigorating, affirming and results in a heart of thanksgiving and song.

—from Your Spiritual Garden: Tending to the Presence of God

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Do We Notice God's Work in Us?

The spirit of the Lord acts on us without force or violence. The subtly of God can be frustrating for those of us that want to be transformed in an instant. Yet faith assures us that God is at work in those who believe. As long as we make time for God, then his work within us will continue unto the day of Christ Jesus.

—from Prayer Everywhere: The Spiritual Life Made Simple

Prayer Everywhere

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Sow Seeds of Peace for Others

When we pray the Peace Prayer, we imagine ourselves as farmers of the world. Like our Divine Master, we look beyond the pain inflicted upon “me” and refuse to strike back in violence. Indeed, we beat the swords of our hearts into plowshares and the spears of our souls into pruning hooks (see Isaiah 2:4). We then ask for the grace to actively sow the seeds of peace for others. As faithful servants tilling the earth, we wait with great anticipation for the harvest of justice and peace.

—from Instruments of Christ: Reflections on the Peace Prayer of Saint Francis of Assisi

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Contemplative and Cosmic Prayer

Franciscan prayer is contemplative and cosmic. It is a type of prayer that impels one to find God in the vast corners of the universe. Because of the Incarnation, the Word made flesh, all of creation is holy; all of creation is the sacrament of God. Prayer is that relationship with God which opens the eyes of believers to the sanctity of all life—from earthworms to humans, from quarks to stars. Everything that exists reflects the goodness of God. Prayer is the breath of the Holy Spirit within us that opens our eyes to the divine good which saturates our world.

—from the book Franciscan Prayer

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Seeds of the Unknown

The seeds of the unknown are the most difficult to trust. Initially mysterious, we struggle against the unknown due to our strong human desire for certitude and security. If we are able to truly trust that God alone suffices, the journey of the unknown seed can be deep, exciting and real. We must trust, risk, and go the distance. The deep true part of ourselves knows us better than we know ourselves. Dare we trust the possibility that it is in what we dream of for others and ourselves that we discover seeds of the unknown and God’s dream in us attempting to be made visible?

—from Your Spiritual Garden: Tending to the Presence of God

Your Spiritual Garden

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