What does God want?

I was in church the other day and an old lady came in and lit a candle by the statue of Jesus. Nothing strange in that. I have lit many a candle in my time, to Jesus, the Blessed Virgin and the Saints.

But that single act by that old lady set me thinking. Why light a candle? Does Jesus really need the light from that candle?

Some people spend a long time in prayer. Reciting the Rosary or other favourite prayers. Others promise God that if He grants them a certain wish they'll do something in return.

But does God need any of these things from us? The simple answer is: No.

God does not need anything from us. He is omnipotent, He created us, and there is nothing we can do to repay His love for us.

Don't misunderstand me. I am not decrying acts of veneration such as lighting candles and prayers. They are essential in showing our love and respect for our Creator. As I said before, I have lit many candles in the past and will continue to do so. I also believe we should never under estimate the power of prayer.

Yet that act from that old lady set me thinking about what God really wants from us. The answer can be found in the words of Jesus when He said: Love God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength. And love your neighbour as you love yourself. (Mark 12:29).

Now then - if we could really do that for God and mean it, wouldn't it be worth all the candles in the world?

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Copyright V Moubarak 2007