Practical ways of dealing with this dilemma.
I can understand your having a hard time finding time and energy to do things, when you have two little persons dependent on you, plus the other responsibilities you have. BUT - there are 24 hours in everyone’s day, no more no less. You need to carve out some of that time for prayer - for your sake, and for your daughters’ sakes. They will depend on you to lead them to Christ, as they grow.
I suggest you focus on fitting in the prayer of meditation, whenever you can and wherever you can, during the day and during the night. For example, using the prayer the Our Father, which I assume you know by heart, you can resolve to prayerfully ponder one particular phrase or petition of that prayer, every free moment you can find during the day, And the next day, focus on another phrase or petition of that prayer. There is the intro to the prayer, and 7 petitions. In 8 days, then, you could make your way to complete the prayer with focus upon every part of that prayer.
By the prayer of meditation, I mean prayerfully ponder, listen intently to, listen for the meaning of, and deeply embrace all that you hear from the Lord, as you speak to Him those precious God-given words of prayer. If you begin with the intro to the prayer,
“Our Father, who art in heaven,”
there is MUCH to listen to, in those words:
“Our” - not “My”, not just “Father” - but “Our”. Why does God want me to say “Our”? Why is that important to God, that I include everyone in the “Our”, and not just myself? So I ponder this part of the prayer - and I PRAY it. I say it, slowly, many times during the day, as time allows, and I ponder it. Realizing that Jesus said to say this, I SAY it. Realizing Jesus said to pray this, I PRAY it, trusting that the “Our” is good and true for me to say and to mean. Jesus wants me to pray for and with everyone who can say “Our Father” - There is a real and important “Our” - a “We” - a community of believers - a family of believers gather together in Him, in our one Lord and God - Our Father.
If you dedicate every day to such meditation upon, and praying, that beautiful and “perfect” prayer the Our Father - the prayer given to us to pray by God Himself! - then I guarantee you will grow in prayer.
Thanks for your post, for I believe many people (not only single parents, with young children) often find themselves “running out of time and energy to pray”. While the answer to the blog article you posted had some practical advice, I think fide’s answer is better than the answer given on the blog.
Whether we have youngsters dependent on us, or other persons dependent on us, we still need, by God’s Grace, to make time in our day for prayer. Yes, we need to “make” time in which we can give our attention and devotion to God. Fide’s description of praying the perfect prayer, “The Our Father” during any busy day is a good model for any of us who have this need for more prayer time.
If we are honest, we know we can waste time, rather than consciously taking our free moments and “making them” precious moments of prayer. Taking one petition of the Our Father per day is a good way to keep our focus simple and direct.
Thanks fide! The Lord provides – I prayed just this morning for God’s Grace to use my time well – and this thread was the first one I read this morning!!! I’m currently re-reading an excellent book on the Our Father, entitled “The Interior Liturgy of the Our Father”, and your advice certainly is God’s way of encouraging me to continue pondering the perfect prayer Jesus taught us – throughout this whole day! That should give me plenty of time !
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