I have made the habit of attending mass after my Tuesday and Thursday classes. Mass would start at around 10 minutes before noon, with the Angelus. My classes end at 11:15, and I would have more time for reading, and taking my car nearer the church (from the school at the back of the shrine).
Before the mass, I usually burn candles near the relic chapel (I honestly don’t know what that area is called, as of writing). There are 8 colors of candles each color symbolizing a specific intention: Red for Health, Blue for Peace, White for Soul, Orange for Career, Green for Money, Yellow for Intelligence, Pink for Love, and Violet for Spiritual Growth.
[Edit: I tried to research on the candle color meanings, and I got different responses….]
I would usually just get 5 candles (not getting White, Pink, and Green), but yesterday I got all eight.
Before lighting these candles, we have to utter this prayer:
PRAYER BEFORE LIGHTING THE CANDLE
Father in Heaven, The Light of Jesus has dispersed the darkness of Hatred and Sin. Accept this candle and let the light of your truth guide me to Your Kingdom. Keep me in the radiance of Your truth. Fill my heart with Your divine love, and please help in my needs
(Mention Your Petition)
Grant this through Christ our Lord and the intercession of Virgin Mary and St. Peregrine, Amen.
The thing is, when I stood there and started praying, my mind went blank on the part where I had to mention my petitions. I’m not sure why, whether it was because I had so many things in mind to pray for, or maybe because I really didn’t know what to ask for specifically that time.
I went ahead just uttering a simple “Lord, You know my needs. And I trust in Your hand in them.” then ended my prayer and proceeded to light the candles. I watch my bundle of candles emit a tall flame that it looked a little weird because it was a bit windy.
To me, it looked like whatever prayer was accompanying that flame just went directly to God. Yes, whatever prayer.
I went to mass still feeling a little preoccupied that I wasn’t able to mention my petitions to God clearly and in detail. The gospel was about the miracle of the five loaves and two fish. (will write another entry about that. The priest gave an aha type of homily for me.) Everything felt a little unclear, until the Prayers of the Faithful.
The mass was in Filipino, but that specific intention struck a chord in me, and good thing, I was able to search for it in Facebook, through Sambuhay Misallette page:
“That we may realize that the longings of the heart cannot be satisfied by the pursuit of worldly success or material comfort…”
I guess that’s what I’m going through now…
Like, what I needed didn’t involve money, a good and high paying job, new clothes, new shoes, among other things… I don’t long for these anymore. At least not that I am much aware of…
I’m currently in that stage of my life where it is very much important that I have time for myself. Time to read, time to write, time to reflect (oh, the introverted me…). I long for peace of mind, for spiritual growth, for an enduring heart, and that kind of patience for a pre-schooler that I’m about to homeschool in a few months.
So what am I praying for?
I realize now that what I’m praying for are for things that are beyond me. Like, achieving these things are no longer 100% under my control, but fully, 100%, under God’s control. I guess that was why the flames of the candles went straight up. It was like me just surrendering, and lifting up everything, whatever they may be, to God.
I’m no longer praying for something specifically for me. But praying for what exactly God sees that I need. Perhaps the things I mentioned here aren’t even the exact things that God plans for me to have. But like I said before, whatever prayers…
Hmm… God-ever prayers?
(just coined that)