|inspired by Psalms 138:7-8|
Today's readings are all about going to the Lord in prayer and getting what we ask for. We all know, if we have tried this, that it doesn't quite work that way. At least it seems not to most of the time. Jim Morrison proclaimed in the intro to The Soft Parade that "You cannot petition the Lord with prayer." Jim Morrison was a young man when he said this, and had not the time nor the wisdom to work out how he might have been wrong.
We can petition the Lord with prayer, and the Lord always answers. It's just that most of the time the answer is "No." The reason for this is that the Lord has a better idea what we need than we do.
So, for instance, when I ask the Lord to give me $749 million so I can distribute it among the needy and accomplish much good work with it, he says to me, in effect, "If you want to do my work, you have to do it with humility. $749 million will not help you in this regard, so instead I am going to give you a huge dollop of poverty to get your mind and soul properly disposed. You're welcome."
And I say, prayerfully as I can manage, "Thank you, Lord." It's taken me a long time to learn this. I'm not very good at it yet, but I am improving. Lent is a good time to remember such things. Good luck with your observances. I'm praying for you.