We can become instruments of grace in the hands of Jesus!
Pope Francis has recommended a simple prayer to follow Mary’s example, which is only four phrases long.
The Pope’s general audience on August 23 was dedicated to Our Lady of Guadalupe as an example of effective evangelization.
She speaks to us of Jesus in a language we understand, he said, in our “mother tongue.”
At the end of the audience, in greetings to Arabic-speaking faithful, the Pope said this:
Following the example of Mary we say to the Lord, “What You will, when You will, and how You will, make us instruments of grace in Your hands.”
This prayer echoes a longer prayer attributed to one of Francis’ predecessors: Clement XI, who was pope from 1700 to 1721.
His prayer, often called the Universal Prayer, says this (in part):
I offer you, Lord, my thoughts: to be fixed on you;
my words: to have you for their theme;
my actions: to reflect my love for you;
my sufferings: to be endured for your greater glory.
I want to do what you ask of me:
In the way you ask, for as long as you ask, because you ask it.
Lord, enlighten my understanding,
strengthen my will,
purify my heart,
and make me holy.
You can read (and pray) the rest of the beautiful prayer here.