Monday of Epiphany 7 – Prayer of the Week

O God, the strength of all who put their trust in You, mercifully grant that by Your power we may be defended against all adversity; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

She was in that uncomfortable and insecure middle-school stage of life when many young women desperately seek approval from people. She too wanted to be the object of attention like the people who filled her screens. She liked this band and reached out to the band leader, and he sent her a text back. She was so excited. He was paying attention to her. He wanted her to come to a concert. He invited her to meet him.

Her peers, including my daughter, were also young and excited that she was talking to a real star. None of them knew the truth. This man was monster who preyed on young women. But someone suspected something. I don’t remember who. Adults stepped in. What was she doing texting with a strange man twenty years older? She was not going to meet this man. A tragedy was avoided in this case because someone stepped up.

We pray that God would defend us from all adversity. I wonder just how naïve we are about what that adversity is. How often haven’t we walked down some path, oblivious to the yawning chasm on this or that side which a divine hand kept us from plunging into? I can think of many moments I have looked in the rearview mirror of life and been horrified about what I had just passed through. Divine protection and angelic guardians are the only reasonable explanations.

Has God put a young person in your life? Spend a few minutes talking with them. Develop a relationship with him or her. Be interested in the hopes, fears, and dreams, however childish of that person. God uses those relationships to protect his children. He places people like you into their lives for a reason.

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