Having Trouble Praying

Hi all!

Recently, I have been having trouble praying. I wasn’t raised in a really religious household so I was never catechized. I went to a local church and was baptized when I was sixteen but no one ever told me how to pray. There are three main reasons I don’t pray:

  1. I usually don’t know what to pray for – I know the Our Father and Hail Mary but that’s about it. Other than those two, I’m not really sure what to say. My dad says its just like talking to Jesus as if he is your friend but even then I’m not really sure what to say. I’m really an introvert…I do better talking to you guys online than I do in the real world.

  2. I am usually too sleepy to pray. People tell me to pray either in the morning or at night…I cannot focus during those times. And usually throughout the day, I either don’t have the time or I forget.

3)I guess there’s some feeling of pointlessness to praying. God never speaks back, not to me at least. And I also feel like its kind of pointless – God knows what I want in my life, why tell him what he already knows?

It’s not that I don’t want to pray – it’s just that I find it difficult. So when I hear about people praying for thirty or forty minutes at a time, I’m like “Wow, how do they do that?”

Any help would be appreciated. You guys are the best. :o

Hi Alex,

Very good questions! The number one thing I can think of in response is that you visualize God as a real Person/God who loves you very much that loves spending time with you. Tell him exactly what you’re struggling with. Tell him your worries. Tell him what made you really happy today. Anything good happen? Thank Him. He delights in you.

You know what? It seems like you learn to pray the more that you actually do it. I know that sounds weird, but I promise you that it’s true. Sure, there are books out there, and some are really good at informing you on the logistics, and they are helpful. However, praying is one of those things you “grow into”. As you develop your friendship with God, it just starts naturally deepening.

I’ve developed the practice of opening the Bible and reading from it once in the morning and once at night. I found that a lot of the times, God speaks to me through that. There are numerous ways God speaks to you. Sure, you don’t hear him with your ears, but you’ll be surprised in how He gets through to us. Maybe others can share their stories.

My final bit of advice, Alex is to look into getting a spiritual director. They will be able to help you with all these spiritual issues and help you grow.

May God bless you! I’m praying for you!:slight_smile:

Thank you, Evania. :slight_smile: That post is really helpful. I appreciate it.

Prayer is a conversation.
Sometimes we compliment (praise) sometimes we complain (express worry/sorrow)
sometimes we gripe about problems, (need a shoulder to cry on) sometimes we ask a favor (petition) sometimes we express love. ( We say how much we love God.)

The Lord is your beloved, and you are beloved of Him.
We have the rote prayers to help us when we don’t know exactly what to say…but then, as with a longtime friend, the words simply tumble out.

Just talk to Him.
Remember to always give thanks.
Close each day with “I love you Lord”.


Heres a link that may help you


It has tons of catholic stuff including links to pages with all kinds of prayers and novenas…

Something that may help you pray (it helps me :slight_smile: ) is to compose your own prayer…its not as hard as it sounds…just look at the layout of a prayer and use them as a guide of how to compose your own prayers…

The main thing to remember is most of us (if not all of us ) struggle with prayer at sometime or other…if we waited until prayer felt easy then we may find that we never pray at all…

God bless you

Crystal waters

The devil will do ANYTHING to stop or prevent
you from praying, it is our LIFELINE to heaven,
as I have posted before, it is like we are a deep
sea diver and the only thing that keeps us from
drowning is the oxygen line of our deep sea diver
suit, that oxygen line is like prayer, we MUST
keep the line open to keep our spiritual life alive,
or else we will die spiritually or at least be so
weak that we cannot “walk” the Christian walk.

i LOVE your answer…especially how you describe prayer as our oxygen line…:slight_smile:

Read this! They are the words of a Doctor of the Church:


  1. Maybe consider using part of the Liturgy of the Hours. You don’t have to say every hour, one per day is fine for a layman and you don’t have to be too strict about exactly when you say it. Evening Prayer for instance could be said anytime from mid afternoon to just before bed. Several different versions are available depending if you prefer more traditional or contemporary styles. The Rosary is another one to try. It doesn’t really matter to much how you pray as long as you do. Use whatever method works for you.

  2. Pick a time that works for you. It doesn’t have to be first or last thing. The important thing is that you can stick to it every day. But I’d strongly recommend something before you go to bed, even if its just an Our Father.

  3. Using set prayers written by others is very helpful for this. You can always start small and build up.

I too, recommend the Liturgy of the Hours (LotH), but I suggest you begin with Night Prayer, as it is the easiest. There is even a book that is JUST the Night Prayer.

When I began RCIA in 2013, I really did not know how to pray. I was doing the Rosary every day, and that helped, but I wanted more. That’s when I decided to try the Liturgy of the Hours.

Well, the LotH seems to have every sort of prayer you might want to pray, and as I became more familiar with them, not only did I find it easier to pray, I also found I was looking forward to it. Plus, sometimes the answer I’m seeking turns up in the Hour I’m praying.

Something else you may want to try. Find a parish with a Perpetual Adoration Chapel and go and visit Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament. I began doing this while I was in RCIA and found that actually being with Him* makes it a whole lot easier to talk to Him.

*Yes, I know He’s everywhere, but I feel closer to Him at Adoration.

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