Wednesday Miracle Prayers with St. Joseph- Supernatural Discernment
As you know, Pope Francis has named this year the "Year of St. Joseph." St. Joseph is traditionally honoured each Wednesday. This year, "The Apostolic Penitentiary issues a Decree granting plenary indulgences for the year of St. Joseph proclaimed by Pope Francis on Tuesday. The special year will last from 8 December 2020 to 8 December 2021." (vatican news link)
St. Joseph is shown beautifully in the following video clip from "A Child Called Jesus." In the film, the director artistically portrays a period of Jesus' life where St. Joseph tragically suffers from a fire in the shipyard where he found work in one of the towns they lived in between Egypt and Nazareth. This movie clip shows the reunion between Jesus and Joseph. Though he was his foster father, he shows such amazing tenderness and love for Jesus...and Jesus, for him.
None of our fathers are perfect- even St. Joseph wasn't. But, as a type of the Heavenly Father, we can entrust ourselves to him. In the beautiful Apostolic Letter Patris Corde, (link) or "With a Father's Heart," Pope Francis reminds us:
"each of us can discover in Joseph- the man who goes unnoticed, a daily, discreet and hidden presence an intercessor, a support and a guide in times of trouble."
The Bible tells us that "God is a spirit, and His worshipers must worship Him in spirit and in truth." (John 4:24) You could also say, from deduction, that God is a spirit, and those in need of discernment must discern His will in spirit and in truth.
Who is there that doesn't need to know God's will? As we said in our latest Novena video- we are all called to find God's will in our life. It pleases Him to make known to us His will (cf. Eph. 1:9)- yet if we do not spend time listening, praying and discerning, we will never know it!
Some people are afraid to discover God's will, because of what He might ask of them!
Yet, God's will is what will make us happiest!
He created us- He knows what will make us happy better than we know ourselves! Hallelujah, He gives the Spirit of truth, to guide us into all truth.
Did you know that the Scripture declares, Jesus said that "the Spirit of truth will be constantly with you and SHALL BE IN YOU." (John 14:17, emphasis ours) Isn't it amazing that Jesus gives us another Advocate- Someone to help us and vindicate us and guide us...if we simply yielded to the Holy Spirit, how much we would be blessed!
St. Joseph was yielded to God's supernatural ways through His Spirit. The Pope emphasizes time and again in Patris Corde that St. Joseph had not 1, or 2, but 4 significant dreams to guide him. Somehow, St. Joseph (like St. Paul later), did not "immediately consult with flesh and blood." (Gal. 1:16) In other words, he knew that he knew it was the voice, the angel (messenger) of God speaking to him. It resonated in his spirit, that it was God his Father speaking...Jesus said later, "my sheep know My voice; they do not know (hear or listen to) the voice of a stranger." (John 10:5;27)
When you get to know the voice of God, you start to understand and grow familiar with the supernatural way He speaks. An angel appeared to Joseph in a dream- somehow he was able to discern that it was not the devil, appearing as an angel of light, as St. Paul warns can happen. (2 Cor. 11:14)
Because God is a spirit, He is supernatural
Because He is supernatural, clearly He will communicate in supernatural ways
Our society is so used to naturalism and materialism, that unfortunately the Church does not know how to discern things spiritually. Many people turn to the dark ways of the occult- which means "knowledge of the hidden." It is anything that seeks to find wisdom supernaturally, albeit apart from God.
The main reason people turn to the occult to find "secret wisdom" such as going to fortune tellers, tarot cards, ouija board, even people who actually consult the 8 Ball for advice, is because they were not taught in Church how to hear the voice of God supernaturally.
The problem is, as one preacher said, you grow up learning in Sunday School about all the supernatural stories of what miracles and signs God did in the Bible days as a kid, and when you grow up they tell you, "oh, that wasn't real. They're just Bible stories."
The reality is, Santa Clause is not real and is a fraudulent replacement of Jesus. So is the Easter Bunny. Kids get used to us telling them lies and fantasies, and when the grow up, realizing they weren't true. We wonder why they don't trust us!
Why can't we tell kids the truth from the beginning, and encourage them to keep believing? Maybe we have lost this faith in the supernatural ourselves. We need to get back to believing that the same God who raised Jesus from the dead, parted the Red Sea, multiplied the loaves, told Noah to build the Ark, and created the world in 7 days is the same God that can touch one's heart today.
St. Joseph, too, was a real person, but one who supernaturally discerned how to act, especially with his family (his ministry and responsibility). He communicated with God spirit to spirit. "Deep calls unto deep." (Psalm 42:7)
What do you need to discern God's will about today? Perhaps you don't know the main calling and assignment God has for your life- perhaps you are discerning a next step, seeking a new job, wondering where to move, how to help your children, or what to do next in life. St. Joseph is our patron for these things, as the Pope reminds us.
In faith, itself the supernatural "substance of the things hoped for, the evidence of things unseen" (Heb. 11:1) we call upon the intercession of Joseph, foster father of Jesus and a spiritual father to us. We ask for what we need, and pray to be open ever more to the Holy Spirit, who speaks in dreams and visions of the night. (Job 33:15; Gen. 15:12; Gen. 46:2)
We say, "speak Lord, Your servants are listening!"
As Pope Francis encouraged us to pray, so we do with faith for supernatural discernment:
Hail, Guardian of the Redeemer, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary. To you God entrusted his only Son; in you Mary placed her trust; with you Christ became man.
Blessed Joseph, to us too, show yourself a father and guide us in the path of life. Obtain for us grace, mercy and courage, and defend us from every evil. Amen.