Do you have a favourite saint? Or a
favourite quote from a saint? Some of you are probably named after a saint or
know the saint’s name of the church that you go to. I love a lot of saints but
one of my favourite sayings comes from St Teresa of Avila. Her feast day is on
the 15th of October. She said to her sisters ‘you can find Jesus between
the pots and pans’.
I just love this saying, it tells me a
lot about Jesus and a lot about prayer.
What is Prayer? Do you think it is just something you do at night on your knees
by your bed? Do you think it is just saying the Rosary or going to Mass? Do you
think it’s something done alone and in silence?
Yes, it’s all these things, but let me
tell you a little secret, just between you and me. Prayer can be something much
more. Prayer can actually be real fun and special, and that is what St Teresa
is talking about. Finding Jesus, anywhere and everywhere and at all times.
How? Well, guess what! God is so big and so
great that He is everywhere. He is in church, He is in the garden, He is on the
street and in your home, He is everywhere. God is not only to be found at certain
times like when you are praying on your knees. No, He is there when you are
watching TV, digging the garden, eating your dinner, playing with your friends.
You name it, God’s there!
This is exciting stuff. You could be
watching TV with God, and actually you could be reading this blog right now
with Him. Cool isn’t it?!
So how do we do this? What’s the
difference between watching TV and watching TV with God?
Well, let me tell you a little story to
help show you what I mean.
When I was a novice (that means I had a
white veil, and had only been a sister in this community for about a year). I
was sent to dig the garden, so that we could plant our vegetables.
I didn’t like the garden, it was hot and the garden was messy. I would get soil
in my gumboots and under my fingernails. No! I didn’t like it. I went, but, I
went thinking about all these things, I did it with a bad heart. Now, I ask
you, was I with Jesus? No, I was not. Jesus was in the garden waiting to be
found by me, but do you think I found Him? No! No, I was so busy thinking all these
thoughts, that I didn’t see Him. Jesus was there, but I wasn’t with Him in the garden.
So you see, this wasn’t prayer.
Well, one day, I was back in the garden,
still thinking ‘I don’t like this’. I was planting seeds, I had a big handful of
seeds and I looked at them, and I realized, seeds are amazing things. I looked
with wonder at them, just one of these seeds I had in my hands would grow into
a plant and that plant, produce vegetables, and those vegetables more seeds and
those seeds even more plants, and so I saw that inside these seeds, that looked
so dead and lifeless, like dust, there was so much life. Like worlds inside
I was stunned and amazed by God’s creation and His handiwork. I said ‘Wow!
God this is great. You are so amazing.’ I felt like I was exploring these seeds,
these worlds, with the child Jesus, and I wanted to show Him what I had found.
Now, do you think I had found Jesus? Yes! I had found Him. I was open to His
presence around me and I discovered Him in the world about me. So, was this
You see, if you are open to Jesus and
open to Him touching your everyday life, like He touched my life in the garden,
you can actually pray all day long. Sometimes using prayers like the Our Father
or Hail Mary and sometimes saying prayers that come from your heart that begin
with Dear Jesus... And sometimes saying nothing but just being aware that God
is with you. Wherever you are, you can try to be with Jesus in your everyday
world. This is how you will find Him between the ‘pots and pans,’ just as St
Teresa of Avila did.