Luke’s Gospel reminds us that the love God has for us is the love of a father. How many times are we disappointed because of unanswered prayers … things we pray to receive but are left without? “What father among you would hand his son a snake when he asks for a fish?”

God knows us better than we know ourselves; this is why we rarely win the lottery. God loves us unconditionally and seeks for us to have a deeper relationship with him and desires for us to live a joy-filled life. But how often do we not take the burdens of our lives to him and try to fix things ourselves? Or do we take the burdens and obstacles in our lives and place it at the foot of the Cross? Do we ask God to assist us in living a more joyful life? This is what the Gospel of Luke is telling us. It is telling us that God desires to give us the good gifts we need, but only if we ask for them.

—Joseph Hamaty is the Executive Director of Montserrat Jesuit Retreat House in Lake Dallas, Texas.