Habit of Prayer
So life over the past couple weeks has been a little strange and most of the times very stressful. Work has been so busy, my head hurts. As I wrote in my last entry “Strange can be good”, I had a very strange week full of all kinds of events. Which lead into last week, full of surprise calls or visits from friends, wrapped around a week of stress at work and then this week of course more stress. So what’s my point? It’s all noise, busyness, and fluff. Those of you that know me know I am a very emotional person. If I am mad, upset, happy, proud, you know it. My emotions show in my physical being. I wish I was better at hiding them sometimes, but I also think it’s who I am. You know where you stand with me. I am pretty much an open book. I do believe I have a lot of noise in my life. There used to be a time when I went to church every morning before work. I would walk across the street and go to a short mass at St. Louis. It helped me everyday start off on a good note. At times I even found peace, just sitting there in the church pew. But then somehow life became stressful and noisy again and everyday went down to 3 times a week and then down to once a week. Same goes with prayer. I would pray every night, but then I found myself so tired and stressed out that I didn’t even think about praying. I am sure at times we go through this. Where we let so much noise into our lives we forget about what is important. Prayer! Mathew Kelly writes in his book, “Change your habits and it will change your life”. And you have to start somewhere. So for me I start the process all over again. I take some time at night before I go to bed to find a relaxing place and read, for me this starts to calm down the nerves in my body and all the noise in my head (which I have a lot). I begin to read something I think will change or impact my life for the better. Then I try to be silent and still. For me this is extremely hard because of all the thoughts (noise) in my head. When the thoughts keep going, I start to say a prayer “Our father whom art in heaven…..” This seems to put me in a place of peace. And then I pray. I am not very good at praying. I feel sometimes that I am saying the wrong things or asking for too much, but I say it anyway, because it’s who I am in the eyes of God. So I will continue to form the habit again and try to get better at blocking out the noise. Changing habits are hard, as we all know. Letting the outside world influence our relationship with God can be overwhelming and hard to control. But every minute you can get, where you can find that time of silence and begin pray, you are on your way to forming that habit that will change your life.
Paul Burch: Thanks, Julie! This is so true in my life as well! And by the way, I love Matthew Kelly! You have given me a lot to think about – appreciate it!
Jane Memory Gruber: Thanks Julie! I think so many of us get so wrapped up in the busyness of our lives that we do forget to pray–we forget to thank God in the moment or turn to Him in the moment. God does want to hear from us–no matter what we are feeling or going through. One of the best praying times for me is while I am driving. I turn down the radio and talk with God as if He is riding right next to me. Thanks for your encouragement and insight!
Lisa Bauer Daly: Every night I begin my prayer…”Thank you God for giving me another day” & end it with….”I love you”!
Lisa Morgan Kuhl : Thanks, Julie. I try to at least start and end my day every day with prayer. My boys are 9 and 5 now and we still say prayers together at their bedtimes. Casey’s prayer always starts with “Thank you God for my babies [his stuffed animals], help Grampa get better …” Reassuring to see that we all strugle with the same issues.
Jennie Key Julie: Thanks for sharing! I agree that it is easy to drift from good discipline, isn’t it? I try to remember to talk to God all day. It’s not always pretty; but it’s real. I talk to God a lot in the car; I am sure the drivers around me think I am on the phone; I guess I am, in a way. I don’t think you can say the wrong things or ask for too much; He can see our hearts and he answers even our unspoken prayers.