Thursday of the First Week
Today’s Gospel contains the familiar passage that assures us that asking God for good things will ultimately satisfy us. “Ask and it be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened...” The passage goes on to explain that “our heavenly Father gives good things to those who ask Him.” It doesn’t say that He gives “bad things” to those who ask Him, so the Gospel seems to say that our prayers should only be for good things, and that these prayers will be answered. Sometimes we ask for things that we should not want; we knock on doors that are better kept closed; we seek things we shouldn’t seek. I fear that we often pray for things that may be important to us in the short term, but which are really not “good things” in God’s infinite wisdom…like winning the lottery, a good grade on an exam, or a promotion. How can we always know what is good or bad? And why do some prayers seem to go unanswered? And why do so many prayers for seemingly good things go unanswered? My answer, my only answer, is more prayer.
God of all wisdom and patience, help us to discern the difference between what is good and what is bad, and then help us acquire the discipline to seek only what is good. Help us to listen to Your word to know what we should want, and which doors we should seek to open. Help us, someday, to understand Your mysterious ways.
Vince Bolduc, Professor of Sociology
First Reading: Esther C:12, 14-16, 23-25
Psalm 138:1-3, 7c-8
Gospel: Matthew 7:7-12
Daily Scripture readings can be found online at the USCCB website