The news do not leave any doubts: they rally around our hopes like a noose. The world’s future seems more and more desperate. Obviously we can seek consolation in our small room doing our own thing, but shadows cover the sky above us. Fear and anxiety are lurking around every corner. Can we live like that?
Some people try to control the situation: they do not read the news, watch TV, or use the Internet. They tightly close the doors and windows of their homes, trying to create some stability. However, when the poisoned atmosphere of the world, despite our precautionary measures, crosses these doors and windows we armor according to our possibilities, we must look for other ways not to be influenced: different activities, entertainment, excitement; just to get away, to forget.
Nothing new. This mechanism has been working just fine in our society for many years. Even the mass media and politicians work hard to provide us with tools that favor this alienation. It does not take much. Weary because of the burden of life and news, a bit of peace is enough for us, no matter how fleeting it is. A moment of tranquility is enough to make us happy. We can breathe a bit before anxiety comes back even more intensely than previously.
We can choose between many possibilities for recreation and emotions. Just tune to the correct channel. We have got the remote control at hand. Yet all this only lasts a few moments. Then you will have to find something else. We also understand that the peace we experienced was not real. It was quite an illusion, a kind of anesthesia.
But if we find it out, what next? Do we have to abandon these insufficient means, capable of giving us a fragile security, which are still useful? You can try to make a step forward, going back to old and secure methods. These means are difficult to use and require effort, but they are irreplaceable. It is an attitude of the heart, the result of belief strengthened by deep and persevering prayer. It seems an obsolete thing. Who talks of faith and prayer today with a strong and undeniable belief? And how many people listen to and take seriously those who do so?
Everyone has his own experiences of prayer. But they are like a First Communion dress stubbornly try to put on, deluding ourselves that it still suits us, even when we grow up. Prayer must grow together with our lives, perhaps it even has to go a little forward. Its role is to offer a quiet and safe space against world events, to disarm our fears and anxieties. Prayer connects us with the real world, whose presence we feel and want, but which we can only achieve going humbly through all the vicissitudes.
Prayer gives us strength, patience, and perseverance. It opens new horizons of hope and meaning. There are so many ways to make it more insightful. Maybe they are a little demanding, such as read the Bible regularly, the participation of the faithful in the sacraments, the time devoted to God. But this is the only certain way that has enabled humanity to emerge from periods that were no less turbulent than today. Then, let us try to read something about prayer and start learning new forms of it. Thus, we might face fear, when we are deprived of those insufficient and deceptive means that, truth to be told, only increase it.