One of the best parts of no longer being a member of any kind of New Age Movement is finding out that the oldest Christian Church on the planet is far more metaphysical than any groovy modern day druid ever could be - even on a good day.
We believe, as outlined in the Book of Revelations, that the Saints in heaven take our petitions to the throne of Christ and lend their support for our requests - all with the understanding, of course, that we will obediently give ourselves over the Will of Almighty God even if it means we don't always get what we want.
Which is, of course, a riff on lyrics of one of my favorite Stones' songs.
I have been praying with St Therese of Liseux for about 10 years now. Every day I say the following prayer:
St Therese, my beloved friend, you promised to spend your heaven doing good upon the earth. I come before you with my needs. I know that you listen to me and approach God for and with me. You are love in the heart of the Church, you are love in the heart of God. Please present my petitions, hopes, needs and dreams I list for you. Please present them to our Loving Father so that He might do what is best for me, for my loved ones and for the fulfillment of God's Kingdom here on earth. I ask you this in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
My daily prayer is always that my brother come Home to Rome. I also ask that I be relieved of the overwhelming obsession to drink and use drugs. I ask that I be relieved of the need for prestige, for earthly rewards and love from creatures because quite frankly those needs have done nothing but gotten me into trouble over and over again. Let's face it gang, I have lousy taste in humans. I'll bet someday it will be revealed that both Keanu Reeves and John Cusack are really horrible men.
The past week has been tough on me physically (the RA has really kicked in and I am in a lot of pain) and mentally (as it gets closer to May the 4th I feel like I have wasted my life and continue to waste it, one day at a time). This is normal for this time of year - the devil always tries to mess with me when it gets close to the day I surrendered my alcoholism to God and so I am fairly used to it now. I know to rev up the prayer, to take time (even if it is a quick 10 minutes) before the Blessed Sacrament and to remind myself of my blessings on a minute-by-minute basis. I also know to not pretend I am fine when I am not and to reach out to other members of my tribe, my 12 step group, my Church and my family (those that can be trusted to not be complete goof balls). I do all that - and I turn to St Therese and remind her that I need help. I remind St Cecilia, my patron saint, that I need the kind of inner strength she demonstrated in the face of torture for The Eucharist. I ask Our Lady for protection and I remind Jesus Christ that I belong to Him now...so He better hold me close.
Today, at home, I opened my personal email and there was a 'letter' from my almost-sister-in-law. She NEVER emails me. I don't mean sometimes never I mean NEVER NEVER NEVER.
It was one of those prayers of St Therese that circulates on the Internet, with a picture of beautiful roses in bloom, attached to it.
So here's the deal -
I know prayer works. I know the saints and angels listen to us and are acutely aware of our needs. I know they pray with us and I feel sorry for those Christians who do not believe in intercessory prayer. They are missing a great chunk of love in their lives. I know that St Therese is a very special friend of mine.
What I keep forgetting is the woman uses the Internet.
Thank you God for my life today exactly as it is...I wouldn't change a thing, even if I could.