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"My Last Thoughts Were of You"

I had a bad dream last night. It was more than a bad dream, a nightmare. My wife heard me shouting and she woke me up. I told her about the dream, a terrifying one, and she asked me: "Did you pray before you went to bed and fell asleep?" I knew she would ask me that. I was so tired that day and I fell fast asleep without my usual examen and night prayers. It is of course not a valid excuse for omitting something very important. (What a shame!)

Father Jerry Orbos, SVD, a well-known priest in the Philippines, has often said: "Every gising (waking up after a night's rest) is a blessing." And so the very first thing we need to do is to get on our knees and thank the Lord for giving us another day and pray our morning offering.

Somebody else has said, "When we go to sleep at night we are not sure whether we are going to wake up, and when we have awaken we are not sure whether we will be going to sleep the following night.

Are we supposed to pray only in the morning and in the evening? The answer is clearly no. Scripture says: "Pray without ceasing . . . be sober and vigilant. Your opponent the devil is prowling around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour."

[The Church prays without ceasing and gives the Liturgy of the Hours, or the Divine Office ( or as her official daily prayer, which clergy and religious are bound to pray. All the faithful are encouraged to pray it.]

If we make it a habit to think of the Lord first thing in the morning by praying the morning offering; if we keep Him in mind when we go about all the activities of our day; and if we make our nightly examination of conscience and night prayers, then I think we can be sure that our very last thoughts will be of Him before our final rest . . . and He will welcome us to His dwelling place, there to live with Him . . . forever.#

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