Onmyknees, every soul has a price, according to the late Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen. He said that one Saturday night, he was hearing Confessions in the cathedral. A young woman came in and said she really wasn’t there to go to Confession, but just wanted to “kill a little time.” He said, “Oh, and how much time would you like to kill?” She said, “About five minutes.” He said, “Who are you trying to fool?” She said, “My mother.” He asked, “Are you scared?” She said, “Yes!” He said, “Well, if you allow me to move this little curtain aside, turn the light on and look at you, I might be able to make your confession for you.” She said, “What are you, a wise guy?” He said, “No, but if you allow me to look at you, I might be able to help.” So, she said he could. When he looked at her, he said, “You are a prostitute.” She said, “Yes! But that’s not all.” So, he pleaded with her for 15 minutes to get her to tell him the rest, but she wouldn’t. She ran out into the night. So, he said he gave every penitent after that a penace of saying a rosary “for the conversion of a great sinner” and they all said they would, except one old woman who complained and said she hadn’t done anything that bad. When he finished hearing confessions, he went and knelt before the Blessed Sacrament and prayed for that young woman. 9:00, 10:00, 11:00. About midnight, he hear the door open and he thought it was perhaps the police coming to see why the lights were on in the cathedral. He turned around, and it was that young woman, in tears, ready to finish her confession. He said the price for hour soul had been “paid.” Some souls are cheap, some souls are expensive. St. Monica prayed for St. Augustine for 30 years before he straightened out!
So, we never know how much prayer and sacrifice it will take to soften the hardened heart of any particular sinner. All we can do is pray continually and offer up any suffering we get to Jesus for that person. And, get others to pray for them, too.
We also used to have a group some years back in my home town. Whenever someone needed prayers (sick, conversion needed, etc.), they would run the recall list (about 40 people). One guy owned a school bus and would pick up those who didn’t feel like driving. The group would meet in the church about 2am for a holy hour for whatever cause was needed. They would do stations of the cross (usually on their knees on the hard marble floor), rosary, etc. I can tell you that many miracles came about from this sort of prayer. It involved sacrifice (getting up at 2am for an hour!) and prayer. Eventually, some bright soul decided we could just do it at 7 or 8pm, and the other sheep went along with it. The sacrifice was lacking, and the miracles stopped, then it all fell apart.
I think it was St. Augustine who said that the conversion of a soul is a greater miracle than when God created the universe. Because when He created the universe, He created it out of nothing. And this nothing from which He created it did not resist Him like we humans do!
Just thought I’d pass this along. Offer your suffering up for your husband, along with your prayers. Then, trust the rest go God. He has His schedule, but He never publishes ahead of time.