We’re back in Ordinary Time. In our Gospel reading, we’re in Mark 1, where Jesus encounters a man with an unclean spirit. After Jesus casts the spirit out, the people are amazed, and they recognize that He teaches and acts “with authority.”
In the first reading today from 1 Samuel 1, Hannah cries out to the Lord in prayer. Her prayer is so fervent that Eli, the priest, thinks she is drunk. Have you ever been so distraught that you cry out to God from the depths of your soul? I’m talking about the uncontrollable sobbing, tears that won’t stop flowing, snot coming out of your nose, ready to puke kind of prayer. Maybe you’ve never been there, but I have. And I’m thinking that maybe that’s what Eli saw Hannah like in the temple. She was praying from the depths of her soul.
I’m sure that our prayers can’t always be like that. Hopefully we don’t experience that kind of anguish very often. Many times I find myself engaging in rather superficial prayer. I suppose it is better than no prayer at all. But I would hope that more of my prayers would be prayers from deep in the soul. They don’t always have to be prayers of woe. Our prayers of joy and thanksgiving and anything else can be from the depths of the soul, too. Maybe someday I’ll reach the point where all my prayers come from that place.
Father, help us to deepen our relationship with you. Help us to share all of our deepest needs and desires and thoughts and feelings with you…from the depths of our soul. Amen.