February 24,2008 3rd Sunday Lent Year A

Scripture: Exodus 17:3-7
John 4:5-42
What do we do when wewant to pray? St.Teresa of Avila describes prayer as a heart to heart conversation withJesus (God) whom we know loves us. Simply, prayer is friends talking (Jesus says: I call you my friend).
Two practical examples of conversation prayer are in twoBible readings of today's Mass. InExodus, Moses pours out his troubles and fear to God. In the Gospel we see Jesus meeting the woman at the well. He is breaking all the rules of that time. E.g..He, a Jew is talking to a Samaritan - this was just not done. And he was talking to a woman unaccompanied. But Jesus knew her need was great. She had been through the trauma of broken relationships, her marriages had failed. She was lonely - coming alone at midday to the well was a time she would normally meet no one. Jesus just talks to her gently. He gives her dignity by asking for a drink of water. To become a giver rather than a receiver bestows dignity and worth. But the most important point is that Jesus accepts her as she is, with all her worries, all her failures and all her faults. This point is vitally important for prayer. Today when we pray we MUST call this point to mind, otherwise our prayer will be just words that come from the mouth and not the heart. We are always accepted by God just as we are. We can approach Him with confidence. St Augustine describes a true friend as someone who knows allabout me and still loves and accepts me. Jesus became a friend of the Woman of Samaria. He wants to be your friend. He says in a living voice: "I call you my friend."