Saints and great leaders inspire faith, hope, and action. St. Jude continues to draw so many to him because of all he inspires in us, especially regarding prayer. Prayer has many forms: formal prayers we learned when we were very young, free-flowing prayers with urgent petitions for help and strength, longer prayer commitments as in novenas, and prayers of gratitude that help us exhale and remember to come back and thank St. Jude and thank God. Prayer is the foundation of our hope; prayer, even when very simple, is taking action. Through prayer, we connect with God’s peace and St. Jude’s hope, both of which lead us to remember we are in God’s hands.
Our prayer is a channel through which we can also take meaningful action to impact the lives of others. The kindness, the smiles, and the compassion we are meant to share and enjoy as people of faith are all expressions of hope we can give others daily. Our devotion to St. Jude can fuel us as his devotees to be mindful of ways we will bring God’s hope and goodness to others.
Our actions can be in the way Mother Teresa describes, as mentioned in Faith, by our Living Example. Prayer life and action work in tandem—one builds upon and nourishes the other. If we find ourselves struggling a bit getting comfortable with more public acts of kindness, remember to try prayer.
We know that the strength of prayer is supporting us during our more difficult times as well as in our joyful times. To share this with people we have a relationship with is a beautiful act of kindness for those we already know and greet with a smile!
In all of this, we become reflections of God’s love and hope; we may never know when it happens, but we can be an integral part of the way God reaches people.
"So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone."