The Word Among Us

Prayer Resources

Building Your Prayer Time

A model for personal prayer.

Building Your Prayer Time: A model for personal prayer.

Start your day with God on your mind and in your heart.

It’s a simple step you can take that can buoy you up as you meet the routine demands of your day, and anchor you when the inevitable storms strike.

Pick a Time

Find a time of day in which you can relax and be (relatively) undisturbed (mothers of small children might need to be particularly creative and accept some disturbances as normal). Morning tends to be a better time to pray for most people; choose a quiet place—in your home, at work, outdoors, in a church.

Quiet Yourself from Distractions. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus; let us throw off everything that distracts us (Hebrews 12:1-2). If it helps you, keep a notepad handy. When “outside” thoughts come to mind, jot them down quickly for consideration later, and return to prayer. Leave your phone or other device in another room.

Examine Your Conscience. Ask the Holy Spirit to shine his light on your heart. Repent of your sins and ask for forgiveness, believing that your sins are forgiven. At Mass, repent during the liturgy’s Penitential Rite. Receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation whenever possible and let God free your conscience—the blood of Christ will purify your conscience from dead works so that you may worship the living God (Hebrews 9:14).

Enter into the Presence of God. Ponder the love Jesus has for us. Spend time considering (and perhaps reciting aloud) the following truths from the Nicene Creed:

• God is our Father/Creator;
• Jesus is our loving Savior;
• The Holy Spirit comforts us;
• The Church is one with Jesus;
• Jesus intercedes for us in heaven.
• Jesus will come again in glory!

Praise God—Father, Son, and Holy Spirit

Fix your thoughts on God the Father and tell him that you love him. Call him “Abba” (Daddy/Father) and thank him for this wonderful creation, for all the good, and for his kindness and care for you.

Fix your thoughts on Jesus, and tell him how grateful you are for his death and his resurrection. He has done wonderful things for you; thank him for those things.

Fix your thoughts on the Holy Spirit, and ask him to teach you about your sins and how to consecrate your life to Jesus more each day. Think about the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23) and ask the Holy Spirit to bring that fruit to maturity in you.

Let God Move You. Take a phrase such as “holy Jesus” and softly repeat it without thinking or distraction. Try to give the Holy Spirit the freedom to show you God’s perspective on “holy Jesus.” You may find yourself in the presence of One who is holy. You may discover new avenues of love toward God.

Ask Questions (Matthew 7:7-11). Go to God and ask him; try to learn how to listen to him and enjoy his presence; try to sense what he might be saying in your heart as you pray and read the Scriptures. Jesus invited all his followers to ask, knock, and seek; our heavenly Father delights in giving good things to those who ask him.

Bring Your Petitions to the Lord. Pray for your family’s needs. Ask God for his blessing for you and your family; ask him to give you and your family spiritual protection to do good and to say “no” to evil and sin. Intercede for the sick, and pray for the whole Church.

Journal Your Prayer Time. A prayer journal will help you to recall what you have prayed for and to retain a sense of what God has expressed to you. It will help you carry Jesus through your day.

(And don’t forget to make the daily meditations from The Word Among Us a part of your prayer time.)