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MAKING ROOM FOR THE HOLY SPIRIT
Fundamentally, our life of prayer depends on the grace of God. As a result, we don't prepare for prayer by merely mechanical processes. It's not as simple as say these words, at these times, for a particular number of minutes per day. Such a mechanical process can help (especially if fueled by Scripture and the prayers of the Church); but a far greater preparation for prayer is the cultivation of humility.
James 4:6 reminds us that "God gives grace to the humble." By his grace, God also makes us humble. He gives us humility so that in emptying us of ourselves we may make room in us for his presence. When we empty ourselves of pride and vanity, we make room in our hearts for the blessed Trinity to dwell. Being full of oneself is problematic precisely because there is no room for the Lord to dwell in us.
We saw yesterday that the Holy Spirit provides for our weakness by driving our prayer into intimacy too deep for words. However, we must get out of own way to allow the Spirit to move through us. This is only accomplished in attaining the virtue of humility. As our Lord himself said, "Unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter into the Kingdom of Heaven" (Matthew 18:3).