EVERYTHING we’ve discussed so far in this Lenten Retreat is equipping you and me to soar toward the heights of sanctity and union with God (and remember, with Him, all things are possible). And yet—and this is of utmost importance—without prayer, it would be like someone who has laid out a hot air balloon upon the ground and set up all their equipment. The pilot tries to climb into the gondola, which is the will of God. He is familiar with his flying manuals, which are the Scriptures and the Catechism. His basket is tethered to the balloon by the ropes of the Sacraments. And last, he has stretched out his balloon along the ground—that is, he has conceded a certain willingness, abandonment, and desire to fly toward Heaven…. But so long as the burner of prayer remains unlit, the balloon—which is his heart—will never expand, and his spiritual life will remain grounded.