As women, we have so much work to do in our world. We are called to love, to serve, and to accept the responsibility of bringing others to Christ and Christ to one another. Our family, our spouses, our children, our co-workers, and all of the people in our lives need our love and attention. And they need good examples that they can follow in striving for holiness.
How can we be such examples? And how can we gather the strength that we need to carry out this important call? We must turn to prayer, calling on God, his mother, and the saints and angels for help. The heavens await our requests.
Become persistent in your prayer life. St. Paul minces no words: “Pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17). From the time we wake until the time we go to bed, our life should be a life of prayer. Jesus wants us to ask, to seek, and to knock. Allow him in. Every day. All day. Open yourselves to receive his abundant blessings and, through his mother, the gifts of grace.
The Eucharist is the heart of our Catholic faith, and there is no greater prayer than the Mass. But for those times in between, throughout the rhythm of daily life, we sometimes need a reminder to turn to prayer. May these words from Brother Lawrence inspire you:
It is not necessary to be always in church to be with God, we can make a private chapel in our heart where we can retire from time to time to commune with him, peacefully, humbly, lovingly; everyone is capable of these intimate conversations with God, some more, others less; he knows what we can do. Let us begin—perhaps he is only waiting for a single generous resolution from us.
Prayers Throughout the Day
Throughout the day, we should be mindful that God wishes to continually hear from us. But how can we possibly speak to God every minute when we are obviously busy? First and foremost, we are comforted by the fact that someone, somewhere in the world is praying. When we do take time to pray, we can unite ourselves to others and in turn, they unite themselves to us so that every minute, God does hear from us through others.
Second, we understand that even our works can be a form of prayer when we intentionally perform them as acts of love. As the Catechism assures us, “He ‘prays without ceasing’ who unites prayer to works and good works to prayer. Only in this way can we consider as realizable the principle of praying with ceasing” (CCC, 2745).
Whether we are doing laundry or preparing for a board meeting, caring for children or operating on a patient, attending school or teaching school, we need God with us at all times. May we begin by joining ourselves with all Catholic women around the world as we unite prayer to our works and our good works to prayer.
The mood with which we begin the day tends to color the entire day. What Francis de Sales understood is that starting the day with God in mind leads to keeping God in mind throughout the day. —Fr. Thomas F. Dailey, OSFS
The moment we awaken, we can choose the tone of our day. We can decide to be tired and negative about the day ahead or we can choose to be the strong, positive women God made us to be. As our feet touch the floor, it’s the perfect time to “think positive.”
Place yourself in God’s presence in the first moments of each day. You will discover the whole day improves with that small offering. Talk to him. He waits for you in the stillness, in the silence of your heart. Speak.
The holiest, most common, most necessary practice in the spiritual life is the presence of God, that is to take delight in and become accustomed to his divine company. —Brother Lawrence
As our day progresses, we continue to focus our hearts and our minds on Christ. We know that some of this focus is simply the awareness of his continual presence, and this moves us toward love and kindness to others. However, we also want to continue speaking to him about our needs or our concerns and in thanksgiving either by traditional prayer or spontaneous prayer. He knows we’re busy, and that’s exactly why he wants us to rely on him.
As night approaches and the dinner table is cleared, we simply want to rest. We have given this day all of our energy, but before we drift off to sleep, we want to take a moment to be grateful and to examine the gifts we have received and the gifts we presented to others so that we can clear our minds to fully rest.
Finding the Words
But what about finding time with God during the in-between moments? Prayer books, though a dime a dozen, can help. Many of us have a few on our own home bookshelves, on our bedside tables, or in our desk drawers. Why do we tend to collect different prayer books? Are we using them? Are the spines cracked and the pages bent back? Are they just being used to hold our holy cards?
In our prayer books, we find the words when we are too tired to do it on our own. We may discover a short line that reminds us, in the middle of a bad day, that we are loved and not forgotten. When we can tuck a small prayer book into our purse or our briefcase and use it throughout the day, in many situations, we learn to turn it all over to God.
We learn that even our actions can become prayer. We learn that talking to God throughout the day makes a difference in our lives, in our attitudes, and in the lives of those around us.
Get out your prayer book. Crack the spine. Bend down the pages. Rough the cover. Use it. God will be pleased—and so will you. Click the banner below to learn more!