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Do you hear anything when you pray?

Third Saturday of Advent, 19 December 2020

In today’s reflection, Waiting in Joyful Hope author Michelle Francl-Donnay reflects on Luke 1:18a, the silencing of Zechariah, and Pope Francis’ advice: prepare to be astonished.

In the comments section below, share your own response to today’s scripture, Francl-Donnay’s reflection, or the accompanying meditation prompt.

2 thoughts on “Do you hear anything when you pray?”

  1. I so admire contemplatives. I aspire to a quiet mind that would allow me to tune in to God’s still, small voice. But actual instances of this are rare for me. When I am trying to pray, I mostly hear a lot of chatter about chores that need doing, conflicts and conundrums, grudges and frustrations. And so, when I occasionally do think I hear God speaking into my mind, I am always immediately skeptical. Isn’t it more likely to be my own noisy internal voice, or even the Devil?

    The Ignatian rules for discernment of spirits are a treasure, but hard for me to recall in their entirety at any given instance. So mostly I just ask, “Does this sound like the God I know?”

  2. Truth: I am writing this on the 20th. No, I was not too busy with Christmas preparations. I was watching Ohio State come from behind to beat Northwestern. Yes, it was astonishing. But, the real astonishment occurred during morning prayer. God pointed out that I had missed Him yesterday, not because of a football game, but because I was playing a word game on my iPad. It was a tournament and I was in second place. I would win points toward a beautiful crown. The astonishing insight was that if I pursued this virtual crown, I would lose my treasure in heaven. I will touch neither treasure. But as intangible as heavenly treasure is, it is no less real. God has blessed me with many astonishments in my life because I was paying attention. “Eyes on me,” says my God, “let me astonish you!”

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