2. The Petition of Fortitude

(The Petition of Our Lord directs us to our means of fruition in hope through the appreciation of the Gift of Fortitude of the Lord.)

Luke 2:49. “And he said to them, `How is it that you sought me?  Did you not know, that I must be about my Father’s business?’”

Psalm 42 [41]:2-5.  “As the hart panteth after the fountains of water; so my soul panteth after thee, O God.  My soul hath thirsted after the strong living God; when shall I come and appear before the face of God?  My tears have been my bread day and night, while it is said to me daily:  Where is thy God?  These things I remembered, and poured out my soul in me:  for I shall go over into the place of the wonderful tabernacle, even to the house of God:  with the voice of joy and praise; the noise of feasting.” [From Book II of the Psaltery]

“The Son of God who became Son of the Virgin also learned to pray according to his human heart.  He learns the formulas of prayer from his mother, who kept in her heart and meditated upon all the “great things” done by the Almighty. (Cf. Lk 1:49; 2:19; 2:51.)  He learns to pray in the words and rhythms of the prayer of his people, in the synagogue at Nazareth and the Temple at Jerusalem.  But his prayer springs from an otherwise secret source, as he intimates at the age of twelve: ‘I must be in my Father’s house.’ (Lk 2:49.)  Here the newness of prayer in the fullness of time begins to be revealed: his filial prayer, which the Father awaits from his children, is finally going to be lived out by the only Son in his humanity, with and for men” (CCC, 2599).

Our Father, 10 Hail Marys (contemplating the mystery), Glory Be and Fatima Prayer.

Excerpt from The Holy Family Rosary:

Hidden within these mysteries the Holy Family provides us with a perfect model in how God supplies our needs when seeking knowledge through, with, or in active petitions to Jesus in prayer.  Jesus’ response presents good reason for us to ponder the Will of God in heartfelt prayers until, as with the Holy Family, we become reunited in loving Him with thanksgiving and praise spent in relief after many humbling tears.  Please tell me, is there any more perfect dialogue between Jesus and His Mother to remind us that our strength is to be sought and found in doing God’s perfect Will? Here we learn by the example of Jesus, Mary and Joseph… that indeed, as Christ sought God’s Will and strength in all ways, so must we!

St. Augustine speaks with familiarity of this, saying: “If I experience pain, relief will come in due course.  If I am offered tribulation, it will serve for my purification.  Does gold shine in the craftman’s furnace?  It will shine later, when it forms part of the collar, when it is part of the jewelry.  But, for the time being, it puts up with being in the fire because when it sheds its impurities it will acquire its brilliant shine.”[1] Just as our Morning and Day star!

The psalmist anticipates our struggles that many answers given in counsel are rarely immediately understood, being drawn to truth well before finding delight in Christ’s promotion: “And I say to you, ask, and it shall be given you: seek, and you shall find: knock, and it shall be opened to you.  For every one that asketh, receiveth; and he that seeketh, findeth; and to him that knocketh, it shall be opened.[2]

Although we are not assured to immediately comprehend when and what is opened to us at the time, we are encouraged by the psalmist’s eschatological prayer that “The Lord is nigh unto them that are of a contrite heart: and he will save the humble of spirit.  Many are the afflictions of the just; but out of them all will the Lord deliver them.[3]

The virtue of patience is gained through prayer and while learning to trust God in all of our needs we are displacing evil’s relentless efforts towards our despair.

[1] Enarrationes in Psalmos, 61, 11.
[2] Lk. 11:9-10.
[3] Ps. 33:19-20.