The Gospels recount for us many miracles worked by Jesus. Our Lord's miracles are God's way of speaking to us and a sign of his strength. They speak to us of his love for all men and women and show us his power.
But miracles are not found only in the past. God's power continues to act today in our lives.
Jesus cured the blind, the deaf, the mute... And He has probably done the same for us. Perhaps we were blind or deaf, crippled or half dead, and God's word has restored us to the life of grace.
Also when we strive each day to attain sanctity--each in our own place in the world and our job, in our ordinary life--our Lord will work miracles in our lives and make use of each of us as an instrument in his hands, to work miracles in the lives of our friends and acquaintances.
In this recollection we are going to consider especially two miracles of our Lord: the multiplication of the loaves and fish and the resurrection of Lazarus.
2. MEDITATION I (GUIDED PRAYER)
Listen to this meditation on our Lord's miracle of the multiplication of the loaves and fish. To listen click here.
3. SPIRITUAL READING
Read the Gospel passage and commentary on the resurrection of Lazarus. Click here.
The Solemnity of the Assumption of Mary on 15 August is a good opportunity to put this advice of Saint Josemaria into practice: “When the feasts of Our Lady come round let us not be sparing in our tokens of affection. Let us raise our hearts to her more often, asking her for what we need, thanking her for her constant, motherly care and entrusting to her the people we love. Though, naturally, if we really want to act as good children, every day is a good day for loving Mary, just as every day is a good day for those who really love one another” (Friends of God, no. 291).
The Holy Rosary is an ancient Christian prayer to the Blessed Virgin Mary, our Mother, asking her to pray for all her children in our time of need. You can find a description of how to pray the Rosary here, and download the Litany of Loreto (traditionally prayed at the end of the Rosary) with the new invocations to Mary recently added by Pope Francis here.
5. MEDITATION II (GUIDED PRAYER)
For the feast of the Assumption, listen to this meditation on our Lady: Timely Lessons on our Lady.
6. EXAMINATION OF CONSCIENCE
The questions below can help us consider in the presence of God how we’ve responded to His love in our acts and omissions. It may help to begin by invoking the Holy Spirit and to end with an act of contrition, expressing our sorrow for our sins and imploring God’s grace to return and remain close to Him. The act of contrition can be any we like, including one as simple as Peter’s words to Jesus after the Resurrection: “Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you (Jn 21:17).
1. Jesus immediately reached out his hand and caught him, saying to him, “O man of little faith, why did you doubt?” (Mt 14:31). Do I find rest in the certainty that Christ is accompanying me? Do I try to direct my thoughts and heart to Him so that I don't become obsessed with difficulties?
2. “My Lord and my God: into your hands I abandon the past and the present and the future, what is small and what is great, what amounts to a little and what amounts to a lot, things temporal and things eternal” (The Way of the Cross, Seventh Station, no. 3). Do I abandon in the hands of my Father God all my concerns, especially anxiousness about what may happen in the future?
3. We have this treasure in earthen vessels, to show that the transcendent power belongs to God and not to us (2 Cor 4:7). Do I accept with serenity my own weakness and trust in God's strength? Do I lose my peace when I experience my defects?
4. “There is a lad here who has five barley loaves and two fish; but what are they among so many?” (Jn 6:9). Do I trustingly place in God's hands all that I have, no matter how small it seems? Do I try to prevent my limitations from discouraging me to be generous?
5. And Jesus said to him, “If you can! All things are possible to him who believes.” Immediately the father of the child cried out and said, “I believe; help my unbelief!” (Mk 9:23-24). Do I trust that our Lord can cure the wounds in my soul? Do I show these to Him with humility and simplicity in my prayer? Do I allow myself to be helped in spiritual direction, making known sincerely the state of my soul?
6. "We will work miracles like Christ did, like the first apostles did. Maybe you yourself, and I, have benefited from such wonders. Perhaps we were blind, or deaf, or paralyzed; perhaps we had the stench of death, and the word of our Lord has lifted us up from our abject state" (Friends of God, no. 262). Do I recall the times that Christ has restored life to me and am I convinced that He can do the same for all souls?
7. Their brother Lazarus was ill. So the sisters sent to him, saying, “Lord, he whom you love is ill” (Jn 11:2-3). Do I beseech Jesus with the same confidence for those who are going through a tough time in their spiritual or personal life?
Make a few brief and specific resolutions that you have seen in your prayer and that you will try to carry out this month.