“Chain letters are the postal equivalent of intestinal flu: you get it and pass it along to your friends.” ~Bob Garfield
Superstition is something that creeps into the faith lives of many people. I cannot begin to tell you the number of “chain letter novenas” I have collected and thrown away from our chapel. The novena may be different but the basics are all the same: pray the novena daily for a series of days, make several copies of the novena and leave them behind so others can find them, and God will grant your intention.
In case you have not figured it out by now, God absolutely does not work that way!
God is not bound by superstition. You cannot rob Him of His glory and majesty by binding Him to your request simply because you followed the directions of a chain letter novena and duped others into doing so as well.
Why do so many people believe that they can bend God to their will? We would be better people if we did all that we could to bend our will to God’s. Our prayer should always take on the character of ending with “not my will, but thine be done.”
That is not to say that we cannot ask God for help. It is not to say that we cannot petition the Lord on a regular basis for a need we feel. However, we cannot begin to think that we are making God do anything by our prayer. After all, prayer is designed to change the one who prays, not God.
Our prayer should make us more open to what God has in store for us. Our prayer should help us to accept God’s will. Our prayer should give us more insight into how God dwells within us and among us. Our prayer then is all about relationship and not coercion. At least, it should be.
Jesus died so that He could destroy the chains of sin and death. Do not bound yourself, then, with the chains of superstition.
FAITH ACTION: Have you allowed superstition to creep into your faith life? Ask God to give you the grace needed to put all your faith and trust in Him.