Thursday, March 21, 2013

Setting a Time for Prayer

It seems like forever, but a few weeks ago I wrote about finding yourself a nice, quiet, comfortable place to pray.  Having that place where you can keep your prayer books, journal, rosary, bible and whatever else you need, will make getting to that prayer time so much easier.

But wait.  When IS that prayer time?  You have your place, you have all of your "stuff", now you need to decide when you are going to go there and actually do that prayin' we're talking about.

I really do think that the best time to pray is first thing in the morning.  Maybe you won't even get out of bed before you begin, although I can't do it that way because I fall back to sleep.  You might even have your breakfast and then hit your prayer spot.  There's something, however, about that somewhat quiet time in the morning, when your brain isn't too overwhelmed with other thoughts, that allows you to converse with God and get your day off on the right foot.

There might be days, or even seasons, when all you can manage for morning prayer is the Morning Offering.  Doesn't matter, do it anyway and set a good tone for the day.

If you're a mom with a nursing baby, maybe you find that you can get in some good prayer time during those middle of the night feedings and/or changes.  Having a nursing baby who wakes up at night reeks havoc on your sleep, so having some quiet time in the morning might not be possible right now.  If it isn't, then carve out a few minutes during your day when it IS quiet and stick with that as your daily prayer time.

If you can't find any other time during the day, try to at least do a few minutes before you go to bed.  I find that this can be risky because if you stay up too late and get too tired, you're more likely to vote for sleep over prayers.  I have my nightly prayer routine that I stick to religiously, but sometimes I'm just too tired!

This brings up another good point.  In order for you to stick with your prayer times, it really is important to decide what time you need to get up and then do  it.  It really doesn't matter if that time is 5:00 am or 9:00 am, just make sure you get up on time!!  There's nothing that will kill your morning prayer faster than oversleeping.

Of course, in order to get up on time, one must make sure that they get to bed at a reasonable hour, too.  If you are consistently NOT getting enough sleep because you stay up too late on your computer, then you will have a hard time getting up on time.

If you need more help with finding time in your day to pray, I have a whole section with worksheets and suggestions in my book "A Plan for Joy in the Home" that can help you to plan out an effective prayer schedule that will work for you.  

It is Wednesday night when I am typing this and my time is up...must go get started on my night time prayers so I don't fall asleep in the middle of them (again)!

God Bless!