I recently shared about my visa anxiety. Overwhelmed and discouraged, I was feeling afraid, doubtful about myself and even my vocation. I am sure that I am not alone in feeling this way in the midst of a trying situation. My mind was cluttered with worry, too cluttered for me to even think straight. Thankfully, there were people praying for me. Something powerful happens when people pray for us; so powerful that even an agnostic friend of mine admits that when religious people pray for him he senses their positive energy. I think this is his way of saying that the power of prayer is not just a psychological phenomenon, but it does affect our environment in a concrete way.
The gospels tell us that the people were often amazed that when Jesus taught for He spoke with authority unlike the religious leaders. The gospel of John tells that the people marveled at Jesus’ authority because they knew that it did not come from education like that of the scribes. The source of Jesus’ authority was not His knowledge. The disciples knew the source of this power and they went straight to the source when they asked Jesus to teach them to pray.
Prayer is God’s special powerful gift given to us. It is not be to used as an afterthought. It is our connection to God and each other. This connection helps us to say the right thing at the right time and maybe not to say anything at all at the right time. Most importantly, people who pray know how to speak authoritatively to the souls of those for whom they praying. This is why when my mind was cluttered with worries of every shape and form in regards to the visa, those who were praying for me were able to speak to my soul and remind me that my hope and vocation is not dependent on any thing but God. It is God who brings to completion the good work He has started in us. Only people who pray for us can speak authoritatively to our souls. They make biblical verses alive while those who cite verses without prayer are like clanging cymbals.
We cannot serve among the homeless children and adults in São Paulo without the spiritual participation of those who pray for us regularly. We are feeling hopeful and reminded of our joint vocation to serve God. It is a corporate effort that can only be fulfilled through prayer.
Thank you for your prayers. Your words brought much joy and peace to our hearts. We are still waiting on our visa. We trust that it will come in God’s perfect timing.