"And when you are praying, do not babble meaninglessly (μὴ βατταλογήσητε) as the Gentiles do, for they suppose that they will be heard for their many words. So do not be like them; for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him.” (Mt 6: 7-8)
The Lord reminds me today that when it comes to prayer, I should focus on quality rather than quantity. Christ gently warns me not to overwhelm myself, in prayer, with many words, the meaning of which I do not understand. Because I do not “magically” connect with God, through some “magical” formulas that I repeat without understanding. I must seek, in prayer, to speak with Him from my heart.
Does this mean that I ignore the many, traditional prayers, of rich theological content, available to me within my Tradition, and just pray in my own words? No. I do, of course, pray in my own words, as need be. But when it comes to traditional prayers, it is important that I seek to learn the meaning of these prayers, so that I say them from my heart, rather than “babble meaninglessly.”
Today let me remember that prayer, as Christ sees it, is a loving discipline. I need not be overwhelmed by prayer, because my God is not a God Who demands words, and more words, for His “satisfaction.” Through prayerful communion with Him, He teaches me to explore and know my heart, which He knows already. So let me open my heart to Him today, as best I can, that I may grow in Him, in prayer.