I’m not alone in believing that we need prayer now, more than ever. Why? Perhaps, because ordinary people aren’t praying as much. People like you. And me.
It’s not like I believe that we get whatever we pray for – far from it. (And don’t I know it.) Sometimes, the greatest blessings come from “unanswered” prayers. (So, if you don’t get what you prayed for, don’t blame God or the power of prayer. God knows what God is doing and sees the big picture when we cannot.) The first, and perhaps foremost, power of prayer is the effect that it has on you, the pray-er.
What is prayer?
Take a moment. Catch your breath. Breathe and let go of all of your petty hangups and worries. Try thinking about the big picture, about the great big world. Remember the inherent beauty of things, remember especially the power and beauty of love. Remember that every light has a shadow and that happy reward often comes through pain in the natural way of things. Get to know yourself. Examine your selfish concerns, your selfish actions, your anger – and gratitude. Contemplate your sorrows and your delights, your fears and your hopes. And do all of this through prayer.
Yes, count your blessings even when this is the hardest thing to do, even when you don’t feel it. God knows there have been times when I certainly haven’t felt it. But, opening communication with my Creator, opening my heart to the Infinite/Eternal One is healing… is amazing sometimes.
Waking up every morning, no matter what you have to face in the day, and remembering that you are loved into being is the best way to begin the day. Remember that you are not in control, but the One who is loves you and everyone that you love – and everyone that you dislike – without end. You will suffer some time each day, God knows. And God suffers with you. Remember Christ suffering on the Cross and all that he is willing to do for you and your eternal happiness. Be willing to suffer a little bit today for him. And for all those who are in much more need of comfort, strength, and guidance than you might be today.
Let yourself be opened up beyond yourself so that God may live in you, loving you and others through you. No matter what terrible things happen today – don’t become terrible. Let God love you. And be free… Free to be who you are created to be, fully and truly human.
That is fulfillment.
Every morning, I try to pray a Morning Offering as part of my Consecration to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Sadly, I’m not a very good pray-er. I get distracted or I forget completely. So, I tied my morning prayer together with something that I regularly enjoy. Singing. Now, it should be said that I am also not a very good singer. But, the joy, and even the effectiveness, of song on me is not in whether or not I hit the notes well – just as the joy and the effectiveness of prayer on me (and the rest of the world through me) is not in whether or not I say the words well. It’s all about loving from the heart and the true joy that comes from loving.
Love is being poured out endlessly onto each of us. And the love flows out, everywhere. It’s contagious.
And, so, I put some of the words of the Sacred Heart Consecration to the tune of “For the Beauty of the Earth” (see video of the song below.) This helps me to remember to open myself up to prayer. And the prayer helps me to become, not a better pray-er, but, I hope, a better prayer. May my life be a prayer…
My Morning Offering to the Sacred Heart
My Lord and my God, I offer up to you this day –
all I have and all I am, everything I do and say,
All for you Most Sacred Heart of my Lord, Jesus Christ.
All my thoughts and all my prayers, trials, joys, and sorrows, too,
all my wants and all my cares, I freely offer up to you –
So that my whole being may honor, love, and glorify you.
From all that can resist or hurt you, my Lord, I turn away
and ask that you will fill my heart with your love in every way.
From you, Lord, may I never part! Keep me in your Sacred Heart.
© 2016 Christina Chase
Christina Chase View All
Although crippled by disease, I'm fully alive in love. I write about the terrible beauty and sacred wonder of life, while living with physical disability and severe dependency. A revert to the Catholic faith through atheism, I'm not afraid to ask life's big questions. I explore what it means to be fully human through my weekly blog and have written a book: It's Good to Be Here, published by Sophia Institute Press.
If as an individual i would be committed into prayer, probably i would be far gone than i really am right now.
Thank you for reflecting with me! I was wondering if you could say more about that, about being committed into prayer and being “far gone”?
I believe that communications done in love, not only prayer but also the comments here, are blessed and powerful. Blessings to you…
Well you know commitment means staying the course no matter the barriers i have faced, may it be allowing a busy life to get in my way, laziness to wake up and have my quiet time this are the small stuffs that get in the way of my commitment to prayer. I Believe the day i win on commitment it will be my next growth level stage..now stagnation has a hold on me for my lack of commitment..
Yes, so many obstacles seem to get in the way of making true commitment! I felt that way, too, which is why I began singing my prayers. With love in your heart, I believe you will find a way to make that quiet time and take just a moment for a prayer – every journey is made up of small steps.
What simple activity do you enjoy doing every day? Having your breakfast or cup of morning coffee? Maybe say The Lord’s Prayer while you drink? Driving, riding, cycling, or walking to work or errands? Say a prayer that means something to you as you go.
In my little life, I found that formal prayers, or scripted prayers, on a regular basis helped open up my mind and heart to prayer, so that the Holy Spirit could work on me. And understanding that my appreciation of a beautiful sunset or pleasant meeting with another human being is a kind of prayer. God hears our gratitude – for it is to Him that we are grateful. This helped me in my past stagnation and whenever I feel dry or barren it still helps to remember that gratitude and loving are the most beautiful prayers.
You are so right that a commitment to prayer can raise us to a new level of growth. May God bless you as you continue to grow and blossom in your life!
You simply articulated it perfectly well..Amen to that prayer..May He also bless you too.please keep up the good work of putting it out here for us to actually reflect.
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