We always pray for you,
that our God may make you worthy of his calling
and powerfully bring to fulfillment every good purpose
and every effort of faith,
that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you,
and you in him,
in accord with the grace of our God and Lord Jesus Christ. (2 Thes 1:11-12)
Prayer is very powerful.
It changes lives.
It changes the life of the person who prays and it has the ability to change the life of the person for whom the prayer is being offered.
No one could be a greater witness of this, perhaps, than St. Monica, the woman whose feast we celebrate today.
Monica, a Christian, was given in marriage to a pagan. He had a violent temper and was very promiscuous. This was a great cross for Monica to bear. Monica was always being ridiculed by her husband for her charity as well as for her faith. However, after years of giving witness as well as praying, Monica won over both her mother-in-law as well as her husband. They converted to Christianity, her husband a year before he died.
Monica’s attention was then fully devoted to her wayward son, Augustine. She prayed continuously for his conversion, which was the farthest thing on Augustine’s mind. He was having too much fun living in sin.
However, with the love, support, prayers, and witness of his mother as well as the teaching of St. Ambrose, Augustine was finally baptized. Monica’s life of prayer was finally realized.
When we pray, we often become disappointed if what we prayed for did not happen in a short period of time. Sometimes people pray for days, weeks, months, or years on end. God does hear our prayers. He just does not answer them according to our will or timetable but according to His own.
FAITH ACTION: Is there anything about which you have given up praying? Make a renewed resolve to continue those prayers — as well as your good example — today.