St. John Damascene
— Confessor and Doctor
St. John was raised up by God to defend the veneration of images, at a time when the Emperor Leo the Isurian endeavored to destroy it. Accused of betraying the Caliph of Damascus, he was condemned to have his right hand cut off. But his hand was miraculously restored, for he promised the Blessed Virgin that he would use it in writing her praises. He kept his promise.
Thou hast held me by my right hand, and by Thy will Thou hast conducted me, and with Thy glory Thou hast received me. — Introit, Psalm 72
The Imitation of Christ
In Thee, therefore, O Lord, do I place all my hope and my refuge; on Thee I cast all my tribulation and anguish; for I find all to be weak and inconstant whatever I behold out of Thee.
Ordered by the persecutors to have his right hand struck off, St. John prayed our Lady to heal him and he would use his hand to write her praises. The hand was miraculously healed, and St. John kept his promise.
When you next pray for something that you want very badly, if you will do something that means sacrifice to yourself and does honor to God, you will feel how much more readily your prayer is heard.
Shall we ever be asking and give nothing in return?