In a previous issue of Love One Another!, we introduced readers to Alicja Lenczewska (1934–2012), a retired teacher who had a rich inner life. The spiritual diary she left behind was examined by a theological commission, at the request of Msgr Andrzej Dzięga, and found to be consistent with Church teaching. Below, we quote the message on prayer which Jesus gave to Alicja Lenczewska.
Prayer and everyday life
† Meeting me is the most important moment of your day — everything should start with it. Then you will have time for everything and peace at heart.
† Everything is the fruit of prayer. Your prayers reflect your life: the state of your soul and body as well as your deeds — their usability for the building of the Kingdom of Heaven in people’s souls, for saving those who perish in their sins. Everything you do with your heart, mind or hands must begin with prayer, end with prayer and remain in prayer, in order to have sense and value.
† Begin everything with prayer and you won’t have any problems with time.
God is most important
Prayer is absorbing God with all your might and rejoicing that you are and that he is. It is getting to know yourself and everything else in him ever better — freeing yourself from the bonds forced upon you by the world, others and yourself.
† The purpose of contemplation is to unite with me to fulfil my will perfectly in every moment of your life. Any mystic experience should have as its sole desire the identification of my will and the reception of the power to fulfil it. Its sole motivation should be love for me, forgetting about yourself and immersing yourself in this love. For me, abandon everything that external, corporal and related to your ambitions and emotions. I am the only reference and benchmark.
Learn from Mary how to be silent and ask her to help you weigh words and remain silent
† Many misunderstand the sense and purpose of it [contemplation], seeking in it their own pleasure or extraordinary mystic experience, possibly also to satisfy their selfishness and vanity.
The conditions of good prayer
† If you talk to somebody, you need to focus your attention entirely on them. You need to understand them and feel how they respond to your words, particularly if it is me whom you are talking to.
† Be and remain in me, and do not get discouraged by the fact that my closeness is not always felt. This should be no obstacle for you.
† It is not about greed for experience, but about remaining in me, quietly and peacefully, regardless of whether I let you know my closeness or not. It is always the same: the love thanks to which you exist.
† It is better to rejoice internally in intimacy with me than to overtly show enthusiasm. Such internal joy can be seen anyway, as it radiates to others. There is no need of augmenting it in any way. I am this joy.
Problems with concentration
— Why can’t I concentrate?
† You have lapsed from the practice of meeting me regularly. You forget about me. Do not pay any attention to people, their boisterousness or garrulousness. […]
— During prayer, I am disturbed by other thoughts — not so much bad as unnecessary and foolish, distracting … Help me, Lord. † Sink into me. — Yes, but without your grace it is impossible.
† I am pleased with your efforts.
† Learn from Mary how to be silent and ask her to help you weigh words and remain silent.
When you ask, give thanks at the same time, because your wishes are fulfilled. Every prayer bears fruit, and nothing is ever wasted
Difficulties in praying
— Do I pray too conventionally?
† In part, yes. You may say less prayer, but with greater zeal, understanding and a feel for every word, so that your thoughts will not wander off when you talk to me. It is not the time or amount that is important, but the quality — the unity with me in prayer.
† Be faithful to my Word, even when it causes pain or is incomprehensible. Always ask for light and help, convinced that you will receive them.
† The more frequently and consciously you ask God, Mary and guardian spirits and souls for help, the more victories you will gain. If you count on yourself, you will lose, because there is no way you can oppose the great power of evil.
The temptation to stop praying
It is bad if there is no continuous prayer in your heart from which your everyday life would flow: all your thoughts, reactions and deeds. When you are in a state of prayer, whatever flows out from you is love and mercy. It is also my wisdom and peace. When prayer (a conscious aspiration to be united with me) dies out in you, you are left with your human void, and the shadow of original sin begins emanating from you. And it may even happen that, through that void, an evil spirit comes and manifests itself in you.
† There can’t be any empty moments or dull time in your heart and your thoughts. There can’t be any preoccupation with that which is external, which comes in from the world, without consciously standing by me — without an inner state of prayer. Take care then, my child, to make the intensity of your inner life grow, to avoid a decline in the inner tension of love and dedication to your God. For as long as you live on the earth, you must not let this aspiration and effort lapse. You may rest only in me when I let your soul, immersed in prayer, rest.
The various faces of prayer
— Teach me to pray zealously, my Lord. † Cling to me with your heart. When life is hard on you, think what good I have done in general and in your life. In the most difficult moments, pray with words — aloud. You should be constantly aware of my presence with you and in you. Talk to me and look carefully at me at every moment of your life, whatever you are doing and wherever you are. Give up everything to me and do everything for me. Do your best to make your everyday life develop in my praise. Think not of yourself, but of me. Then I will think of you and take care of everything, including making our encounters in prayer and everyday events perfect.
† My child, if thoughts whirl in your mind and emotions overflow your heart, try to overcome this by active prayer, using words of zealous praise and thanksgiving, in particular for hardship and suffering. Ask for strength and perseverance, for the ability to accept everything and offer it in the purity of your heart.
If you feel, however, that the grace of silence is setting in your heart, that my loving look is resting upon you, then go silent, calm your mind and the emotions of your heart, and remain with your eyes fixed on me. Immerse yourself in my look, so that you are engulfed by it and it penetrates the whole of you.
Remain in the silence of awe, so as not to lose anything of the sanctity of this moment of grace which is given to you. This is the greatest grace and the most elevated state of your soul immersed in me, which is to enlighten the time when you go back to the outer world by way of your senses and mind.
Be and remain in me, and do not get discouraged by the fact that my closeness is not always felt
Prayer of unification
† Which is the most perfect form of prayer? Remaining silent in awe. This is possible for a soul that has loved the most and desires to render up everything to its beloved.
† You ask how to set about it. Only desire it — I shall do the rest. Only express your fiat, as Mary did. She did not do anything more than agreeing, desiring and loving. And she subjected everything to this only love in which and for which she lived. She gave up everything and trusted in everything. This is why she bore me to the world! Everyone can do the same by giving themselves up to my will.
The fruits of prayer
† The amount of prayer reflects the amount of love, wisdom and peace in your heart. As much as you have received from me in prayer, you can give — of what is worth giving — to someone else. From yourself, you have nothing to give. You can give your brothers only my goodness, your void or the evil of hell.
† When you ask, give thanks at the same time, because your wishes are fulfilled. Every prayer bears fruit, and nothing is ever wasted. It does not matter that you cannot see the fruits. They have been born and will ripen in time.