How faithful and consistent are you in your prayer life?
That can be a tough question to answer for many of us.
I know that I struggle to keep prayer in its rightful place as a daily and meaningful practice in my life.
When I do make the time to pray and have a wonderful conversation with God, it’s usually while I’m laying in bed at night at the end of a long day.
Inevitably, I end up going off on some crazy daydream tangent and/or falling asleep before my “chat” is complete.
The problem I seem to have with prayer is two-fold:
To me, prayer is one of those things that should just come naturally, but it doesn’t always happen that way. I crave some structure (I am an engineer after all), yet I want to have a very personal and real conversation with our Lord.
That means that simply saying the Our Father, while it’s wonderful, isn’t enough – I need to connect through a prayerful conversation.
I’ve been struggling with this for a while, which is why I was so excited during Mass yesterday when our new priest started talking about having these same struggles in his early years of preaching. It was clear he could relate to the busy members of our parish.
While he (rightfully) said that “If you’re too busy to pray, you’re too busy” – he also offered up a fantastic prayer that even the busiest among us can use as the center of their daily prayer life.
Here’s how it goes:
1. For the first minute, pray to God the Father and THANK HIM specifically for all the good things that you’ve experienced over the last 24 hours.
2. For the second minute, pray to God the Son (yeah, that’s Jesus) to ASK FORGIVENESS for all of your sins and wrongdoings over the last 24 hours.
3. For the last minute, pray to God the Holy Spirit to ASK FOR THE GRACE and strength you need for the particular issues you’re facing now and over the next day.
I used this approach last night (and stayed awake) and again this morning during a morning run.
To me, it’s a perfect way to focus on three different areas where I need God in my life, while also recognizing the mystery of the Holy Trinity that we believe as Catholics. Of course, you could modify the structure slightly to suit your needs and beliefs.
I hope this simple approach to prayer helps you make your relationship with God a daily encounter and enhances your marriage in the process.
If you think this approach is helpful, I encourage you to share it with others by clicking the Facebook, Pinterest or Twitter buttons above or by sending it to a friend via email.
Dustin Riechmann created Engaged Marriage to help other married couples live a life they love (especially) when they feel too busy to make it happen. He has many passions, including sharing ways to enjoy an awesome marriage in 15 minutes a day, but his heart belongs with his wife Bethany and their three young kids.