My blog began because of the encouragement of my sister. She knew my love for writing when I pray. My desire to enter into real conversation with God that went much deeper than memorized prayer.
So, many times, you’ll find me sharing what may seem like random thoughts.
These thoughts are a peek into my prayer life, as imperfect as it may be. A peek into my personal conversations with God.
I want to share these thoughts to inspire you to learn the art of prayer. To go deeper in your relationship with Your Savior. To get to know Him like never before.
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What to sacrifice for Lent? I’ve tried giving up all the standard things. Chocolate, caffeine, Facebook…
But I always worry my sacrifices aren’t good enough. So, as Lent approaches, I choose harder and harder sacrifices until suddenly, I’ve picked an acceptably impossible penance.
Because there’s nothing quite like “failing Lent,” right? Needless to say, I’ve never cold-turkeyed something for Lent and stuck with it the whole 40 days.
A few years ago, I found myself slumped, dejected. Sitting in Adoration halfway through a Lent in which my selected penance had long since been thrown out the window. I begged Jesus to show me a way to grow in holiness without setting myself up for another failure.
I emerged with a completely new approach to my Lenten penance.
I was about four months postpartum after Baby #2. My oldest was not even 2 years old yet, and it was difficult to have them both attached to me all day long.
It was hard to adjust from meeting the needs of just one toddler to meeting the needs of two tiny humans. And, oh yeah, my husband still wanted to have sex once in a while.
But I was all touched out. Maxed out. I was meeting everybody else’s needs, but somehow not my own. The last thing in the world that I wanted was to get all hands-on with my husband.
I wanted to be able to think. To be able to pray. I craved a spiritual connection that was being suffocated by all the physical needs of my family.
I needed me some Jesus.
So I took off for a quick Adoration visit. And I sat there complaining to God about how drained my body was. About how little I wanted to be intimate with my husband. About how I didn’t want to let him down, but I needed something… different. Something more. I needed to connect on other levels.
Jesus prompted me:
Me: Sure, we do that every day.
Jesus: No. PRAY. Tonight. Before you have sex.
Me: yeahhhh-NO. I’m not about to hop out of bed mid-deed and say a Rosary.
Jesus: No, nothing like that. Pray like this…
We go to Mass every Sunday or more. We know the routine so well we sometimes go on auto-pilot. We receive the Eucharist habitually. And we lose our sense of awe and mystery.
I’m here to bring it back today.
Let’s start with what we know.
1. The Last Supper is the first Mass.
2. Every Mass makes present Jesus’ sacrifice on the Cross.
3. The Last Supper came before the Crucifixion.
Basic Bible timeline: Holy Thursday. Then Good Friday.
But this means that the first Mass came before the Crucifixion. In that Mass at the Last Supper, Jesus’ sacrifice on the Cross was re-presented in an unbloody way.
Made present again. In memorial of His crucifixion. Even though it didn’t happen yet.
What the what?!
I can almost feel the disapproving glares of the parishioners behind me burning holes in the back of my head, but I don’t dare turn and look.
I am sitting on the floor at the front of the adoration chapel with my three energetic children, making a desperate attempt at meditation, peppered with mad dashes after my children as they sprint towards the exit, stick their fingers in the electrical socket, and prepare to climb the votive candle display.
My concentration bounces back and forth between my prayers, little voices giggling and singing, and big voices shouting to hear themselves echo across the cathedral ceiling.
At least we’re here with You, Jesus. We’re trying our best. Bless us that during our time here we may come to know You better.
“I like reading meditations, but I don’t know how to do one myself….” Does that sound familiar?
Honestly, I used to feel that way.
Then I found that St. Francis deSales, in Introduction to the Devout Life, lays out a wonderful outline that taught me how to spend an entire hour in Eucharistic adoration (nearly) distraction free!
I want to share these steps with you, so you can try it too.
Maybe you only have a few minutes, or maybe you have an entire hour on your hands; either way, these steps form a great framework to developing a deep, meaningful, personal prayer life.
Let’s take a walk through the format for meditations (and keep an eye out for the printable at the end!)
Let’s face it, I’m not a college student any more. And I’m not a contemplative nun. I’m a mom. Specifically, a homeschooling mom with three young kids. My prayer life should look different from a college kid’s. Different from a contemplative nun’s. Different from the mom next door.
My prayer life is unique to me. And frankly, it’s hectic, distractable, and revolves around my family life.
We’re a busy family. Who isn’t? But you can never be too busy for prayer. I discovered ways to pray by myself and with my spouse and kids that complement our crazy hectic family days.
Take a sneak-peek at the a day-in-the-prayer-life-of-me!