Suggestions for Daily Prayer

HI! I’m a cradle catholic married with 3 small kids. I homeschool my oldest and we are in general a busy family. I am struggling with how to pray. We pray rote prayers daily, a morning offering, small prayers thru the day and nightly prayers. My husband prays a daily rosary and we sometimes do it together. The problem I’m having is this; I do not have a relationship with Christ. I say the prayers, go thru the motions but I’m not ‘there’, centered & focused. I understand it’s important to ‘fake it until you make it’, be an example for my kids. But I want more. I need more.

I am looking for suggestions or ideas (books, links ect) of what you do for daily prayer?, how do you teach your kids to pray?, how do you pray for your kids? how do you do it all and remain sane? We need something simple yet powerful. I’m open to all suggestions. Thanks for your help.

There is a series of books called “In Conversation with God,” by Fr. Francis Fernandez. The full series is pretty pricey, but you could pick up one volume to try it and see what you think. The books follow the reading cycle at Mass, and draw some point out from the readings for deeper meditation as it applies to everyday life. For instance, the section from the feast of St. Bartholomew the other day started with Jesus’ statement that he was a true Israelite, in whom there was no duplicity. The meditation for that day focused on the virtue of sincerity.

Personally I love these books. I set aside time for personal prayer every day, but honestly some days it’s really hard to focus and get going with it-- fatigue, distracting kids, what’s for dinner, look at that stack of laundry I need to fold, etc… I’ve found these books really, really helpful to jump start a conversation with our Lord about concrete things that I need to be praying about.

Hope this helps, and best of luck. Daily prayer can be a huge struggle when you have little people underfoot, but it is really the lifeblood of your personal sanctity, and your family’s. There’s never been a saint who wasn’t seriously committed to prayer, and we’re all called to be saints. :slight_smile:

Margaret

Oh, boy, am I perhaps the worst person to give suggestions. Both our daughters are married with children of their own and I was never a cradle Catholic — having come to the Church when I was 60 years old.

So, you may want to take this with a grain of salt.
1. For yourself: Try what I call lectio divina in a travel pack. When I have more things to do than time to do them, I sometimes squeeze in a very short time to read a part of a psalm. I read until I say something like, “I need to keep this thought — this is interesting.” Often this reading is less than a minute. Then I stop reading and take that idea with me throughout the day — constantly keeping my mind linked to that psalm-based light. (Here is a link to lectio divina.)

Lectio in a travel size takes “no time” yet helps keeps me in a prayerful state.

We have Big Ben Chimes (for a computer) which bong every 15 minutes — these are constant reminders — and for us they remind us of our favorite monastery because the bells sound like the ones the monks also hear throughout their day.

2. For the children: I might have some prayers come out of their study and play. On a walk to explore the garden and any new cocoons, flowers, or ant hills in the yard, there is also a lesson in God’s truth which can lead into a prayer.
Mom, homeschooler, cook, two-A.M. doctor, and living a life that makes three young children say “my Mom loves God” — all sounds like a deeply-felt prayer that God must be pleased to hear today. :slight_smile:

My dear friend

In conversation with God is reat fuel for meditation as recommended above. As said we are all called to be saints. Being a saint is to be the person God always intended us to be - a fully human and normal human being who is very loving like God. Everything can be prayer when we do Gods will and do it well for God, and for love of God. Even sleep can be prayer, and should be. I think you need meditation though. Good spiritual reading like the one mentioned will give you fuel for prayer. Set a time and just talk to God mentally in your meditation be it 10,20 or 30 mins / day. We all need some quite time with God. You cannot have a relationship with someone if you don’t know them and then if you don’t spend time with them and talk to them. It’s the same with God - we need to get to know Him by reading usually and we develop a relationship with Him by spending a while every day talking to Him - meditation or mental prayer. It’s often hard but make it a big priority that you will have some quite time to talk with God each day. I would offer a last piece of advice if I may- do your best to really love God, especially in your prayer. In the end the only thing God wants is our love. So put a lot of love into your prayer and be sure God is exceedingly pleased. If we feel nothing then we can offer the greatest love- sacrificial love. This love is divine. The same love God has for us. The most important thing is to just love God.
Hope this helps.

May God bless you abundantly:thumbsup::slight_smile:

John

Thank you all for your responses. I truly appreciate you taking the time to help me. I’m checking into that book and will give it a shot.

Have any of you heard or Cursillo and if so, what are your thoughts? My husband has asked me to attend one this fall.

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