A Talk About Prayer* (Part 5)
St. Teresa says that the petition "Thy kingdom come" follows very naturally from the preceding one, since a father's kingdom belongs to his children. "Say, then," she continues, "to your heavenly Father: 'Since the world, the devil, and the flesh reign upon earth, do Thou reign over us as our King, and destroy in our souls these kingdoms of avarice, pride, arid sensuality.’”
In this petition we address Him as our King, and beg Him to reign over us, and set up His kingdom in our souls. How many aspirations may we not make to that effect, and how much time may we not spend upon this petition! But this is not all; for we beg and pray Him in this petition to establish His kingdom in other souls also, that all men may love Him.
And we also pray that the kingdoms of the world may recognize the principles of religion and truth and justice, and the nations become truly Christian. Also that God's kingdom, which is the Catholic Church, may be triumphant in the world, the Vicar of Christ delivered from his enemies, and all people recognize the Catholic religion as the one true faith.
Thus we may make this petition a prayer of intercession for the whole world. Again we pray in this place that God would give us His kingdom, that is, the kingdom of heaven - thus praying for our everlasting salvation, and that of our neighbor. And finally we pray for His second coming, when "The kingdoms of the world shall become the kingdom of the Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever;" when all Wrongs shall be righted and all justice done, and the proud shall be cast down; and the meek shall inherit the kingdom, and Satan and his ministers shall be chained in everlasting darkness; "when God shall wipe away all tears from our eyes; and death shall be no more, nor mourning, nor crying, nor any more sorrow, for the former things are passed away." (Apoc. xxi. 4.)
Behold all the matter of prayer contained in this one petition. Well might we spend upon it the whole time of our prayer...
* From Spencer's "The Little Grain of Wheat."
From "Prayer-Book for Religious"
by Rev. F.X. Lasance
Copyright 1904, 1914