Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. “This is not that God should do what he wills, but that we may be able to do what God wills,” St. Cyprian says in reflecting on this petition of the Our Father.
Weak as we are, we find it hard to know and to do God’s will, and so Jesus, “ showing the weakness of the humanity which he bore, said Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me, and showing his disciples an example, that they should do not their own will but God’s, he went on to say nevertheless, let it not be my will, but yours.”
Cyprian describes at length how we humans do God’s will: by dealing with others humbly, by holding steadily to our faith, by being just and merciful in what we do, by being moral in our lives.
But God’s will is to be done “on earth,’ we pray. Are only humans involved in doing God’s will, or is the earth itself involved in this petition?
The psalms call for the earth and all creation to “bless the Lord.” The earth itself is called to do God’s will. It has a place in God’s plan. Our responsibility is to discern what God’s will is for our earthly home and see that it is done.
Doing God’s will involves more than ourselves and human relationships. It extends to the earth as well. One of the points Pope Francis makes in Laudato sí.