Prayer For My Mother In Law Who Passed Away?
- Marvin Harvey
O God, Who has commanded us to honour our father and mother, have compassion in Thy mercy, on the souls of my father and mother; forgive them their sins, and grant that I may see them in the joy of eternal brightness. Through Christ our Lord. Amen. Christ Who was crucified for your sake free you from excruciating pain.
- May Christ Who died for you free you from the death that never ends.
- May Christ the Son of the living God, set you in the ever green loveliness of His Paradise, and may He, the true Shepherd recognize you as one of His own.
- May you see your Redeemer face to face and standing in His presence forever, may you see with joyful eyes Truth revealed in all its fullness.
Amen May Christ Who was crucified for your sake free you from excruciating pain. May Christ Who died for you free you from the death that never ends. May Christ the Son of the living God, set you in the ever green loveliness of His Paradise, and may He, the true Shepherd recognize you as one of His own.
May you see your Redeemer face to face and standing in His presence forever, may you see with joyful eyes Truth revealed in all its fullness. Amen. I commend you, my dear wife, mother and grandmother to Almighty God, and entrust you to your creator. May you rest in the arms of the Lord who formed you from the dust of the earth.
May Holy Mary, the angels and all the saints welcome you now that you have gone forth from this life. May Christ who was crucified for you, bring you freedom and peace. May Christ who died for you, admit you into his garden of paradise. May Christ, the true Shepherd embrace you as one of his flock.
How do I pray for my mother-in-law?
10 Powerful Prayers for My Mother-in-Law Finding your forever love and becoming one as husband and wife means gaining not only a spouse but also your spouse’s mother as your family. Here are 10 powerful prayers for your mother-in-law. Along with the prayers are printable images for you to use or share.
- A Prayer for My Mother-in-Law’s Health Jesus, the Great Physician, today, I am grateful for my mother-in-law.
- I desire that she would live a long life of good health so that her grandchildren would get to grow up knowing and enjoying her.
- Relieve her of any aches and pain, so that her body may not be weary, but rested.
Fill her mind with Your truth, so that her mind may be renewed. Cause her to see Your countless blessings, so that her heart may leap for joy. Give her faith for today, so that her spirit may be refreshed. I pray in Jesus’ mighty name. Amen. A Prayer for My Mother-in-Law’s Marriage O God, my Promise-Keeper, You are so good to have provided marriage for humankind. These days, marriage is not always held in high esteem, and yet I am encouraged that my in-laws have remained together. I pray that they would only grow stronger together, that even though their faces become marked with age, their love would keep them young. A Prayer for My Mother-in-Law’s Career God our Great Provider, I thank You that You assign each of us our place for our good. Thank You that my mother-in-law is in a position where she can have a career. I ask that You give her favor in the position she is in at her job. A Prayer for My Mother-in-Law’s Relationship with God God of Enduring Faithfulness, I ask that You reveal Yourself even more to my mother-in-law. You have revealed Yourself in creation, and You reveal Yourself in Your Word. I also know that Your people love You because You have loved us first. A Prayer for Wisdom for My Mother-in-Law Lord, our Peace-Bringer, You are the God who gives good gifts to His children. I ask that You give an increase of wisdom to my mother-in-law. Lord give her the ability to make prudent decisions in times where discernment is needed. A Prayer for My Mother-in-Law on Her Birthday My Father God, You have blessed me greatly with a second mother. I celebrate my mother-in-law’s life today. She is one-of-a-kind, and her presence has added to my life. Of all the gifts she is to receive today, I thank You especially for the gift of life for this very day. A Prayer for My Mother-in-Law for Financial Recovery Compassionate and Gracious God, nothing escapes Your notice, and Your care for us is incomprehensible. I pray for my mother-in-law and the situation she is in. I ask that You turn her financial circumstances around and provide for her. A Prayer for My Mother-in-Law’s Hobbies Jesus, my Savior, You know our lives from the dramatic to the everyday. Lord, I ask for my mother-in-law’s everyday hobbies. May they be a positive creative outlet for her. I pray that this continues to be a way for her to relieve stress and enjoy Your creation. A Prayer for My Mother-in-Law When She Travels Father in Heaven, You walk beside us at all times. I ask that You be a shield and defender for my mother-in-law as she embarks on this journey. Thank You that she is able to travel. I ask that, in her journey, You give her safety. A Prayer for My Mother-in-Law’s Retirement Sovereign Lord, thank You that You are with us in all stages of life. I thank You that my mother-in-law now can enjoy retirement. I pray that this will be a wonderful time in her life. Lord, all of our lives are valuable and worthwhile for You.
- Show her new ways in which she can glorify You and show love to those around her during this chapter of her life.
- Grow her in wisdom and knowledge of You.
- Let her be able to take pleasure in the freedom and time she now has.
- Help her to be involved in things that are worthwhile and wholesome.
- All this I pray in Jesus’ name.
Amen. Author Bio Natalie Regoli is a child of God, devoted wife, and mother of two boys. She has a Master’s Degree in Law from The University of Texas. Natalie has been published in several national journals and has been practicing law for 18 years. : 10 Powerful Prayers for My Mother-in-Law
What is a good Bible verse for the loss of a mother?
Verses For Moms Who Have Passed Away – Though we all will likely face our parents passing away at some point in time, it doesn’t make it any easier. These Bible verses about losing a mother can help guide you through your grief and help you feel stronger.
Psalm 48:14 For this God is our God for ever and ever; he will be our guide even to the end. Isaiah 57:1-2 The righteous perish, and no one takes it to heart; the devout are taken away, and no one understands that the righteous are taken away to be spared from evil. Those who walk uprightly enter into peace; they find rest as they lie in death. Isaiah 41:10 Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.2 Corinthians 1:3-4 who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. Genesis 24:67 Then Isaac brought her into his mother Sarah’s tent, and he took Rebekah, and she became his wife, and he loved her; thus Isaac was comforted after his mother’s death. Lamentations 3:31-32 For the Lord will not reject forever, For if He causes grief, Then He will have compassion According to His abundant loving kindness.
How do I pray for my dead mother?
“A Prayer for a Deceased Mother” – O God, who hast commanded us to honor our father and our mother; in Thy mercy have pity on the soul of my mother, and forgive her her trespasses; and make me to see her again in the joy of everlasting brightness. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.
What is a good psalm for grief?
Psalm 6. Be merciful to me, LORD, for I am faint; O LORD, heal me, for my bones are in agony. My soul is in anguish.
Whats a good prayer for someone who lost a loved one?
For Those Who Mourn – Bless those who mourn, eternal God, with the comfort of your love that they may face each new day with hope and the certainty that nothing can destroy the good that has been given. May their memories become joyful, their days enriched with friendship, and their lives encircled by your love. – Vienna Cobb Anderson Back to top
What does the Bible say about seeing loved ones in heaven?
7. The reunion of believing loved ones – When Paul writes to believers who grieve the loss of a loved one, he offers them this comfort: “We who are still alive will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air” (1 Thessalonians 4:17, emphasis mine),
“Them” refers to believing loved ones who are now in the presence of the Lord. A wife who grieves the loss of her believing husband has the comfort of knowing that when the Lord comes, she will meet her husband again. Sons and daughters who grieve the loss of a believing father or mother can find comfort in the prospect of this happy reunion when we will be reunited with those who have gone before us into the presence of the Lord.
That’s more than enough to settle the issue for me, and I hope that it is for you as well. Christians who know and love each other on earth will know and love each other in heaven. Go deeper on this topic in the sermon “Will We Know Each Other in Heaven?” which is part of the Listeners Favorites set. This article is adapted from Pastor Colin’s February 2017 column in Mature Living Magazine, Colin Smith is the Senior Pastor of The Orchard Evangelical Free Church in the northwest suburbs of Chicago. He has authored a number of books, including Heaven, How I Got Here and Heaven, So Near – So Far, Colin is the Founder and Teaching Pastor for Open the Bible. Follow him on Twitter,
What is the prayer of comfort?
Get More Inspiration Delivered to Your Inbox – 2) Psalm 33:18 (based on NIV) “Lord, Your eyes are on me. I place my hope in Your unfailing love.” 3) Psalm 94:19 (based on TLB, NIV) “God, when anxiety rises up in me, Your comfort gives me renewed hope and cheer.
” 4) Proverbs 18:10 (based on NIV) “Your name, Lord, is a fortified tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.” 5) Isaiah 40:31 (based on KJV) “I wait on You, Lord, to renew my strength, that I may mount up with wings like an eagle’s; that I may run and not be weary, and walk and not faint.” 6) Jeremiah 29:11 (based on TLB, NIV) “Lord, I know the plans You have for me are plans for good, not evil, plans to prosper me, not to harm me.
Remind me that You are designing and arranging things to give me a hope and a future,” 7) Lamentations 3:22-24 (based on NRSV, NIV) “Lord, Your steadfast love never ends. Your compassions never fail. They are new every morning ; great is Your faithfulness.” 8) Romans 15:13 (based on NASB) “God of hope, fill me with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit I may abound in hope.” 9) 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 (based on NIV) “God, help me not to lose heart, even when it feels like I’m wasting away.
Remind me that inwardly I’m being renewed day by day. Show me how my troubles are achieving for me an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. Fix my eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” 10) 2 Thessalonians 2:16–17 (based on NLT) “Lord, You love me and by Your grace have given me eternal comfort and a wonderful hope,
Now, comfort and strengthen me in every good thing I do and say.”
What is a prayer in a memorial in law?
Contents of a memorial – Before going into the details of formatting, it is important to list the contents of a memorial which are as follows: • Cover page • Table of contents • Table of abbreviations • Index of authorities • Statement of jurisdiction • Statement of facts • Issues raised • Summary of arguments • Arguments advanced • Prayer A cover page consists of the name of the moot court competition, the court before which the parties are appearing, the names of the parties, whether you are the plaintiff or the defendant, your team code and any other necessary detail. Table of contents obviously lists the contents in your memorial. Table of abbreviations lists all the abbreviations used throughout your memorial including in your footnotes. For example, para stands for paragraph, ed. stands for editor, so on and so forth. Index of authorities is like the bibliography where you list all the cases you cited, the books, the reports, the statutes you’ve used and any other material that you have used to prepare your memorial. Statement of jurisdiction is a proclamation of the jurisdiction of the court where the petitioners have filed the case. It is important that this is included and is correct for maintainability of the case filed. Statement of facts are the facts of the proposition but include those which are important for and relevant to your case.
- The facts of the proposition you wish to include will change with whether you are a plaintiff or a defendant.
- Issues raised include the contentions for the proposition as already mentioned and explained in the first post ( Preliminary: How To Deal With A Moot Proposition ).
- Summary of arguments is your arguments for each issue raised, only in brief.
Arguments advanced are detailed explanations of each of your issue raised explaining and supporting your issue with extensive cases, reports, statutes, facts, etc. The more legal cases you use, the stronger will be your argument. Prayer is one of the most important parts of a memorial as well as during oral rounds.
What are the 3 powerful prayers?
The prayer of protection. The prayer of transformation. The prayer of restoration.
How do you pray for the soul of the departed?
Skip to content Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen. Like the seed buried in the ground, you have produced the harvest of eternal life for us; make us always dead to sin and alive to God. Amen. “The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” “The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.” “Give all your worries to Him, because He cares for you.
” “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.” “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.” “My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you.
Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” Office Hours Monday through Friday 9:00 am – 4:30 pm Saturday 9:00 am – 1:00 pm Closed Sunday Grounds Visitation Daily from Sunrise – Sunset Copyright © 2022 | webCemeteries and Gate of Heaven Cemetery | All Rights Reserved Page load link Go to Top
What do you say at your mother in law funeral?
She Was a Breath of Fresh Air – “There is always light. How can there not be?” Her humor was always entertaining, a breath of fresh air for everyone. We were so used to it that no one ever got offended. And she loved us immensely. All she had in her heart was love. She loved the air around her, the bustling of the leaves, the swaying of the trees, the humming of the birds and the drizzling raindrops.
- I used to love the way she found happiness in small things around her.
- She taught me to look around whenever I thought hope is lost, darkness is here.
- There is always light.
- How can there not be?” She’d say.
- And yes, when was Evelyn ever wrong? Thank you for coming all the way here to celebrate the life of my mother-in law.
I’m sure she is somewhere, gazing down upon us and wondering, “Ughhare these people going to sit here with these sobbing faces for the next two hours? Boring. very boring.” I can literally imagine her uttering those words. That is why I would like to request you all to smile.
- Smile in her memory, remember her presence, appreciate the love she always had for everyone, embrace the positivity that she wished upon us, and most importantly, know that she will always shine upon us.
- She is not one who likes to remain silent.
- So, the next time I mess up something, I know whose ‘invisible hand’ has smacked me on the head.
She will always be my guide, my strength and my motivation. She has introduced a new perspective of life to me and I would like it pass it down to my children too. I will tell them that their grandmother was stronger than the Avengers, Fiercer than the Power Rangers and most significantly, kinder than Mother Teresa.
What does the Bible say about honoring your mother in law?
Honoring Your Mother-In-Law “My mother-in-law and I are complete opposites. She’s extroverted and loves to talk. I’m introverted and prefer to listen. She loves big family gatherings, and I prefer small groups. It seems like whenever we’re together, I can hardly get a word in.
- Can’t my husband just be the one to communicate with her? I feel drained every time we’re together.” Does this sound familiar? Over our years in ministry my husband and I have done a good amount of pre-marriage counseling.
- In-law relationships are often a point of contention.
- One of the key points we emphasize is that the new husband and wife must learn to leave and cleave, or separate from their families of origin in order to form a new family.
It’s important for them to begin functioning as their own family unit instead of an extension of their parents. But at the same time, that doesn’t mean they push their parents out of the picture. Exodus 20:12 tells us to honor our parents. Now that you are united to your husband as one flesh, in a way, his parents are also your parents.
So the command to honor them applies not just to our biological parents but our in-laws. You might be tempted to think— but can’t my husband just deal with his mom ? Why do I have to be involved? We’re so different! We hardly have anything in common other than the man we both love. But this is just the reason we should make an effort to honor our mother-in-law.
Showing honor to the woman who raised our husband, who nourished him with daily meals, drove him to countless practices and cares so deeply about him, is actually a way to love our husband. If our husband constantly hears us complaining about something his mom did, tension can build in both the marriage and the relationship with his parents.
Are mother in-laws important?
Mothers-in-law have been the butt of millions of jokes. In fact, stereotypes dating back as far as 50 years portray the mother-in-law as the most problematic relationship in the family. Yet, it’s no joke when it comes to being a good mother-in-law. This role is not only challenging but requires considerable effort.
- Being a good mother-in-law is one of the most important roles in healthy family dynamics.
- In order to someday be a good grandmother, you should first study how to be a good mother-in-law, as this relationship can set the tone for your role as grandmother,
- Additionally, if you focus on being a positive influence and acting accordingly, research shows that these attitudes and behaviors could end up being a self-fulfilling prophecy in many instances.
In other words, people who believe their ties to their in-laws will be strong, will end up having strong ties.
What is the most powerful prayer you can pray?
I am now going to tell you about the shortest, simplest, and most powerful prayer in the world. This is not one of the many “methods”, because it bypasses methods and cuts right to the heart of practicing God’s presence, which is the essence of prayer. It is called the “Jesus Prayer”, and it consists simply in uttering the single word “Jesus” (or “Lord Jesus”, or “Lord Jesus Christ, have mercy on me, a sinner”) in any situation, at any time and place, either aloud or silently. There is only one prerequisite, one presupposition: that you are a Christian.
If you have faith in Christ, hope in Christ, and love of Christ, you can pray the most powerful prayer in the world, because you have real contact with the greatest power in the universe: Christ himself, who assured us, in his last words to his apostles, that “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me” (Mt 28:18).
It is also the simplest of all prayers. It is not one of the many “methods”, because it bypasses methods and cuts right to the heart of practicing God’s presence, which is the essence of prayer, the secret of which has been given to us by God the Father.
The secret is simply God the Son, God incarnate, the Lord Jesus. Its simplicity and flexibility As the Catechism says, “The invocation of the holy name of Jesus is the simplest way of praying always. This prayer is possible ‘at all times’ because it is not one occupation among others but the only occupation: that of loving God, which animates and transfigures every action in Christ Jesus” (CCC 2668).
Because it is so short and simple, this prayer can be prayed literally at any time at all and at all times, even times when longer and more complex forms of prayer are not practical or even possible. This includes times of anguish, pain, or stress, and times of deep happiness and joy.
- It can be used by everyone (and has been): by the rankest beginner and the most advanced saint.
- It is not only for beginners; the saints use it too.
- It is not “cheating” just because it is so short.
- For it will make you pray more, not less.
- This only sounds paradoxical, for one of the things Jesus reminds us to do, when we invoke him by name, is to pray more! It is so simple that it is like the center point of a circle.
It is the whole circle. It contains in itself the whole gospel. The Catechism says: “The name ‘Jesus’ contains all: God and man and the whole economy of creation and salvation” (CCC 2666). Into this name the Christian can pour all of his faith, with nothing whatsoever left over, for to be a Christian is to rest all of your faith on Christ, with nothing left over.
- It is not only the shortest prayer but also the shortest and earliest creed,
- Twice the New Testament mentions this most basic of all the Christian creeds: the simple three-word sentence “Jesus is Lord” (I Cor 12:3) and the same creed in four words: “Jesus Christ is Lord” (Phil 2:11).
- It is also the most distinctively Christian creed, for “Lord” ( Kyrios ) means “God”, and Christ’s divinity and lordship over one’s life is the distinctive, essential faith of Christians: no non-Christian believes that (if he did, he would be a Christian), and all Christians believe it (if they do not, they are not Christians),
What it is not: Magic Like any prayer, it “works”, not by the power of some impersonal magic but by the power of personal faith and hope and love. It is like a sacrament in that way: it “works” objectively ( ex opere operato ), by the power of God’s action, not ours; but it does not “work” without our free choice.
- It is like turning on a hose: the water comes to us, not from us, but it comes only when we choose to let it through.
- The mere pronunciation of the name “Jesus” is not invoking him and is not prayer.
- A parrot could do that.
- God does not deal in magic, because magic bypasses the soul, especially the heart; it is like a machine.
But God is a lover, and he wants our hearts, wants to transform our hearts, wants to live in our hearts. Love is its own end. Magic, like technology, is always used as a means to some greater end. If you pray this prayer as a means, as a kind of magic or spiritual technology, then you are using it as you would use a machine or magic spell.
- What you love and desire is the higher end, the thing that the machine or magic spell gets you.
- But whatever that thing is, the love of things of God’s gifts instead of God does not bring God closer; it pushes him farther away.
- So using this prayer as a kind of magic does exactly the opposite of what prayer is supposed to do.
When you pray this prayer, do not concentrate on the name, the word, the sound, or the letters. Do not think of the name but of Jesus. And do not try to meditate on scenes from the Gospels or truths from theology, or to imagine what Jesus looks like, as you do in some other forms of prayer.
- Just reach out to Jesus in blind faith.
- The principal thing is to stand before God with the mind in the heart, and to go on standing before Him unceasingly day and night, until the end of life” (Bishop Theophan, quoted by Kallistos Ware in The Power of the Name: The Jesus Prayer in Orthodox Spirituality ).
What it is not: Psychology This prayer is not merely subjective, like a psychological device, any more than it is merely objective, like magic. It is not a sort of Christian yoga. It is not meditation. Its purpose is not to transform our consciousness and make us mystics, or to bring inner peace, or to center on our own heart.
- Whether these things are good or bad, these things are not what this prayer is for.
- For all these things are subjective, inside the human soul; but this prayer is dialogue, relationship, reaching out to another person, to Jesus, God made man, invoking him as your savior, lover, lord, and God.
- You have faith and hope in him as your savior; you love him as your lover; you obey him as your lord; you adore him as your God.
In this prayer our attention is not directed inward, into our own consciousness, but only out onto Jesus. Even when we address Jesus living in our own soul, he is not self but other; he is Lord of the self. Yet, although our intention in this prayer is not to transform our consciousness, this prayer does transform our consciousness.
How? It unifies it. Our usual consciousness is like an unruly, stormy sea, or like a flock of chattering monkeys, or a cage of butterflies, or a hundred little bouncing balls of mercury spilled from a fever thermometer. We cannot gather it together. Only God can, for God is the Logos, One of the meanings of this incredibly rich word in ancient Greek, the word given to the eternal, divine, pre-incarnate Christ, is “gathering-into-one”.
When we pray this prayer and invoke Jesus the Logos, Jesus the Logos acts and does in fact unify our consciousness. But this is not what we aim at; we aim at him, The unification of our consciousness happens in us (slowly and subtly and sweetly) only when we forget ourselves in him.
This is one of the ways “he who loses his self shall find it.” Repetition of the holy name conditions our unconscious mind to see this name as normal, as central, and to expect him to be present and active, as a dog is conditioned by his master to see its master as central and to expect its master to be present and active.
Do we train our dogs but not our own unconscious minds? You may object, “But this sounds like a magic spell or a mantra: something not rational.” In a sense it is (though not in the sense repudiated above). Do you not know that black magic can be overcome only by white magic, not by reason? And our culture’s secularism and materialism is a powerful spell of black magic.
- It makes us judge Jesus by its standards instead of judging it by his standards, because it makes us see Jesus as abnormal and our culture as normal; to see Jesus as a questionable, tiny thing surrounded by an unquestionable, greater thing, namely, our culture.
- This is a cosmic illusion! Invoking the holy name builds up resistance to that illusion.
That is not black magic; it is not itself an illusion but sheer realism. Jesus is everywhere and everywhen and the ultimate meaning of everything. This prayer in deed conditions us, but it conditions us to know reality. What it is: Power “The kingdom of God does not consist in talk but in power”, says Saint Paul (1 Cor 4:20).
- The reason this prayer is so powerful is that the name of Jesus is not just a set of letters or sounds.
- It is not a passive word but a creative word, like the word by which God created the universe.
- He is the Word by which God created the universe!) Every time we receive Christ in the Eucharist, we are instructed by the liturgy to pray, “Lord, I am not worthy to receive you, but only say the word and I shall be healed.” All our energy and effort is not strong enough to heal our own souls, but God’s word of power is.
That word is so powerful that by it God made the universe out of nothing, and by it he is doing the even greater deed of making saints out of sinners. That word is Jesus Christ. In most ancient societies, a person’s name was treated, not as a mere artificial label for pragmatic purposes of human communication, but as a truth, a sign of the person’s unique identity.
- Revealing your name was thus an act of intimate personal trust, like a handshake.
- A handshake originally meant: “See? I bear no weapon.
- You can trust me.” It is a little like your P.I.N. today.
- In all of human history, God revealed his own true name, his eternal name, only to one man Moses and only to one people the Hebrews, his own “chosen people” and only at one time at the burning bush (Ex 3).
This name was the secret no philosopher or mystic had ever attained, the very essence of God, the nature of ultimate reality: “I AM.” But then, many centuries later, God did an even greater thing; he revealed a new name in Jesus (“Savior”). This is now the most precious name in the world.
It is a golden key. It opens all doors, transforms all corners of our lives. But we do not use this golden key, and doors remain locked. In fact, our society is dying because it has turned the most precious name in the world, the name of its Savior, into a casual curse word. Even Muslims respect the holy name of Jesus more than Christians do, in practice: they commonly add “blessed be he” every time they pronounce it.
In the Acts of the Apostles (3:1-10), Peter and John heal a man lame from birth when they say, “In the name of Jesus Christ, walk.” Throughout the history of the Church and the lives of the saints, many such miracles of healing have been done “in his name”.
Exorcisms are performed “in his name”. The name of Jesus is so powerful that it can knock the devil out of a soul! The name of Jesus is our salvation. John ends his Gospel with this summary: “These are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in his name ” (Jn 20:31, emphasis added).
“The name of Jesus Christ” is not only the key to power-filled prayer but the key to our salvation. So we had better understand it! What does the phrase “in the name of Jesus Christ” mean? Suppose you are poor, but your father is rich. When you try to cash a check for half a million dollars in your own name, you will get only a laugh from the bank.
But if the check is in your father’s name, you will get the money. Our Father in Heaven gave us unlimited grace in the “account” of Jesus Christ and then put us “into Christ”, inserted us into his family, so that we can use the family name, so to speak, to cash checks on the account of divine grace. Saint Paul tells us that our account is unlimited: “My God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus” (Phil 4:19).
Jesus himself first assured us of this wonderful truth, which we find hard to believe because it seems too good to be true, and then he explained why it is true: Ask, and it will be given you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.
- For every one who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.
- What man of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him! (Mt 7:7-I I).
If even we love our children so much that we do not settle for anything less than the very best for them, why do we think God loves his children less? What it is: Real presence It is probably a very good exercise to practice “the imitation of Christ”, to walk “in his steps”, to ask “What would Jesus do?” in all circumstances.
- But the prayer we are teaching now is even better, for two reasons.
- First, invoking his name invokes his real presence, not mental imitation; something objective, not subjective; between us and him, not just in us.
- Second, it is actual, not potential; indicative, not subjunctive; “What is Jesus doing?” rather than “What would Jesus do?” To invoke Jesus’ name is to place yourself in his presence, to open yourself to his power, his energy, The prayer of Jesus’ name actually brings God closer, makes him more present.
He is always present in some way, since he knows and loves each one of us at every moment; but he is not present to those who do not pray as intimately as he is present to those who do. Prayer makes a difference; “prayer changes things.” It may or may not change our external circumstances.
(It does if God sees that that change is good for us; it does not if God sees that it is not.) But it always changes our relationship to God, which is infinitely more important than external circumstances, however pressing they may seem, because it is eternal but they are temporary, and because it is our very self but they are not.
What it is: Grace In saying it brings God closer, I do not mean to say that it changes God. It changes us. But it does not just make a change within us, a psychological change; it makes a change between us and God, a real, objective change. It changes the real relationship; it increases the intimacy.
- It is as real as changing your relationship to the sun by going outdoors.
- When we go outdoors into the sun, we do not move the sun closer to us, we move ourselves closer to the sun.
- But the difference it makes is real: we can get warmed only when we stand in the sunlight and in the Sonlight.
- When this happens, it is not merely something we do but something God does in us.
It is grace, it is his action; our action is to enter into his action, as a tiny stream flows into a great river. His coming is, of course, his gift, his grace. The vehicle by which he comes is also his grace: it is Jesus himself. And the gift he gives us in giving us his blessed name to invoke is also his grace.
- So, therefore, his coming to us in power on this vehicle, this name, is also pure grace.
- Even our remembering to use this vehicle, this name, is his grace.
- As Saint Therese said, “Everything is a grace.” What it is: Sacramental The Catechism says: “To pray ‘Jesus’ is to invoke him and to call him within us.
His name is the only one that contains the presence it signifies” (CCC 2666). In other words, it is sacramental. God comes to us on his name like a king on his stallion. When we pray to the Father in Jesus’ name, we provide God with a vehicle to come to us or, rather, we use the vehicle God has provided for us.
We do not initiate, we respond; we respond to his grace by using the gift of his name that he gave us and told us to use; and he responds to our obedience by doing what he promised: actually coming. This is the definition of a sacrament: a sign instituted by Christ to give grace and a sign that actually effects what it signifies,
Jesus himself is the primary sacrament. So the believing Christian’s use of Jesus’ name is sacramental. The very act of praying “Jesus” effects what it signifies, brings about what the name “Jesus” signifies, which is “Savior”, or “God saves”. That is the literal meaning, in Hebrew, of the name God commanded Joseph to give to Mary’s son: “You shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins” (Mt I:2I).
- A name is not a machine, for a person is not a machine.
- The name of a person must be personally “involved” (that is, called upon) in faith and hope and love, as a human father is “invoked” by his son in Jesus’ parable in Matthew 7.
- But though it is not a machine, it really “works”: when a son calls to his father, “Dad!” the father actually comes.
Why? Suppose we were to ask the father. His answer would be obvious: “Because that’s my son!” The same is true of our relationship to God now that Christ has made us God’s children and his brothers. No stranger can call a human being “Dad”, and no stranger can be sure that a man will come if he calls him only by his “proper name”, for example, “Mr.
Smith”. But Mr. Smith’s son can be sure his dad will come because his son can invoke him under the name “Dad”, as no one else can. Jesus has made it possible for us to do the same with God. In fact, the name he taught us to call God is “Abba”, which is the Hebrew word, not just for “Father”, but for “Dad”, or “Daddy”, or even “Dada”.
It is the word of ultimate intimacy. You may think the claim that invoking his name actually brings about his presence is an arrogant one. But in fact it is a humble one, because it is obeying his design, not initiating our own. Or you may think, “What right do we have to think he will come whenever we call? Is he a dog?” No, he is a lover.
What it is: Sacred The fact that this holy name of Jesus actually brings about the presence of God explains why God gave us, as the second of all his commandments, “You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain” (Ex 20:7). In the Old Testament, the self-revealed name of God was YHWH, in Hebrew: a name is always written without the vowels because it was forbidden to pronounce it, since it meant “I AM”, or “I AM WHO AM”, and to pronounce that name is to claim to bear it.
You can pronounce any other name, like “Ivan” or “Mary” or “Hey, You” without claiming to be the person who bears that name; there is only one name that you cannot say in the second person (you) or the third person (he or she), and that is “I”. Thus no Jew ever dared to pronounce that holy name, or even guess how the vowels were supposed to be pronounced, because it could be truly spoken only by God himself.
That is why the Jews tried to execute Jesus for blasphemy when he pronounced it in his own name (Jn 8:58). And that is also why Jesus commanded us to pray to the Father, as the very first petition of the model prayer he taught (which we call the Lord’s Prayer, or the Our Father) “Hallowed be thy name” (Mt 6:9).
For we actually bring about and fulfill what we pray for when we call on the holy name of Jesus. We bring his presence and his mercy down from Heaven to earth, so to speak. Thus it is blasphemy to treat this holy name like any other name, because it has a holy power unlike any other power.
- Its practice I will tell you a little bit from my own experience about what I think will happen when you use this prayer.
- For I have tried many other, more complex, and more abstract ways to pray, and I have found them all less effective than this most childlike of all ways.
- Perhaps the most shattering consequence of his real presence, which is brought about by invoking his name, is that we become unable to lie to ourselves any more.
He is light, and wherever he inserts his lordship there is now an absolute necessity of honesty and a zero tolerance for any form of self-deception, self-congratulation, or self gratification, even those forms that felt necessary, natural, and almost innocent before.
He is gentle, but he is light, and he simply does not and will not coexist with any darkness at all; either he casts it out, or it keeps him out. This is the negative dimension of the fact that he is light. He subtracts our falsehoods. But he also adds his truth. The positive dimension is essentially a clarification of vision, of perspective, of “the big picture”.
He does not (usually) give specific directions or instant solutions, but he always gives a clarification of our vision. (This usually happens gradually.) Thus there is a positive side to even the negative point made above. For instance, he makes us men see how flawed and mixed our motives are even in such natural and spontaneous things as a look into the face of a beautiful woman.
- Half of all the women in the world are beautiful to men, nearly all are beautiful when they smile, and all are beautiful all the time to God.) We find that there is something in this look that is his, and also something that is not from him but is from the world, the flesh, or the Enemy.
- And yet this insight does not bring about a guilty despair but a happy humility.
For it is a sign of his presence. He is the standard. When the plumb line is present, apparently straight lines show their inclination. And this is, of course, upsetting (how easily our lines incline!), but much more is it a cause of joy (it is he!). As John Wesley said, “The best thing is, God is with us.” Once we realize that, we have the secret of joy: simply to do all that is from his will with joy, because he is there, and what is not from his will do not do.
And when his light and our darkness, his straight and our crooked, are thus brought into relationship and warfare, we gain rather than lose, even if it is upsetting. It is like bringing in the Roto-Rooter man: the garbage becomes visible, but it also becomes removable. Before his light came in, our sin was just as much present but undetected.
But he was not just as much present. So that is a gain. Furthermore, he is stronger than sin; he exorcises sin more than sin exorcises him. All we have to do is to give him a chance. Open the blinds, and light casts out darkness every time. This new sense of vision or perspective that invoking his name brings about is most sharply perceived when we invoke his name upon our problems and complaints.
- The wordless message I seem to get most frequently is something like this: “There are things that are infinitely more important for you than these little problems.
- They are all little compared to me.
- In fact, most of what you think of as your problems are in fact your opportunities opportunities for the really important thing, the ‘one thing needful’, your relationship with me.
So get on with it. You don’t have much more time.” He is surprisingly brisk and unsentimental. He is a no-nonsense God. Perhaps the most definite and ubiquitous sign of his real presence, and the clearest difference between the times when I invoke his name and the times when I do not, is the state of quiet, calm alertness that he brings.
Usually, I am either calm or alert, not both. When I am calm, I am relaxed and ready for sleep; when I am alert, I am worried or agitated and ready for problems. His peace, however, is not sleepiness, and his alertness is not anxiety. His presence manifests itself, not in fire or wind or thunder, but in a still, small voice.
Only in this quietness does he give us the certainty of his presence. We usually cannot hear this because we are making so much inner noise, especially when we are agitated. But this is when he wants most to come, for he goes where the need is. And what happens when we invoke him during our agitation? He answers! But not by magic or spectacle.
Nothing spectacular happens when I invoke the holy name at times when I am reacting to my problems by the “fight-or-flight response” that is so natural to our animal nature (that is, either by the “fight” of inner rage and resentment or by the “flight” of self-pity and fantasizing). At such times, when I pray his name, I do not suddenly feel holy or happy, but I do suddenly feel,
well, “mature” is the only word that comes to mind. The word from the Word is often something like “Grow up!” I suddenly see that far more important things are at stake than my feelings, when I let his great wave come in and wash my little garbage away.
What had looked big on my beach looks tiny in his waves. We do not always get specific answers, even when we invoke his name; but we always get the Answerer. It is better to have his authority for “no answer” than our authority for ours. When I am in the middle of some garbage, he gives me no answer to my questions ” Why did you put me here?” or ” How do I solve it?”, but he gives me instead an answer to another question: ” Who? ” It is he.
That is his answer: himself. The real question is: ” Who’s there? ” And the answer is in Matthew 14:27. We always start our sentences with “I”. We unconsciously play God. He teaches us to see our “I” as surrounded by him instead of vice versa. He is no longer an ingredient in our experience; we are ingredients in his.
- We are actors in his play; he is not an actor in ours, not even the most important actor.
- Let me give you a small example of the positive side to this “sense of perspective” that we get from invoking his name.
- The other day he reminded me to speak his name while I was painting an unimportant piece of porch wood, and I suddenly saw that what I was doing was not just painting a porch but painting a portrait, myself, I was walking Home to him.
Each brush stroke was a small step to Heaven. Heaven was here in this old porch, too. For all beauty, even this tiny bit of it that I was making, is his, is like him; beauty is one of the things he is, and all earthly beauty is a sunbeam of his sun. I remembered the story of two men hauling stones through a muddy medieval street.
- One was cursing and the other was singing.
- A traveler asked them what they were doing.
- The curser replied, “I’m trying to get this damned rock to roll through this damned mud!” The singer replied, “I’m building a cathedral.” Is there any downside to this prayer? What is the main problem with this prayer? Simply remembering to do it.
This is embarrassing, because this forgetting is so foolish. Why do we forget? Clearly this forgetting is not merely a mental problem. There are mental blocks to remembering. Something in us fears remembering. And I think we all know what that is. When we do remember and call him, and he comes and acts, he does all the work, for free! Our part is only to call; the Great Physician makes house calls and charges nothing.
- And yet we continually fail to call him.
- Is this reasonable? The solution to this “forgetting” is not in our power but his.
- In order to receive, we must ask for the grace of remembering to ask.
- And for the grace to trust him with our thoughts as well as with our lives.
- He is the Master also of our miserable memories.
A thought comes into our mind when he says, “Come!” and leaves when he says “Go!” He is the centurion, our thoughts are his soldiers. The Lord giveth, the Lord taketh away, blessed be the name of the Lord.