"When a soul recognises the will of God and shows a readiness to submit to it entirely, then God gives Himself to such a soul and renders it most powerful succour under all circumstances." - Rev. Jean-Pierre de Caussade

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Motherhood and prayer: changing my attitude

I'm not a theologian or an expert or anything…just a young mom trying to put prayer first. Just sharing my experiences!

I had it in my brain that I would write alllll about how I'm trying to incorporate the rosary and the Liturgy of the Hours into my day….but then I realized I should start with something else first.

My attitude towards prayer. Sad to say (and boy, is it humbling to admit), these last few months I looked at prayer as an inconvenient obligation and something I just really didn't look forward to at all. I'd say a half-hearted prayer here and there throughout the day, thinking that was enough, all while making lame excuses (i.e. dishes, laundry) as to why I couldn't spend more time in prayer. And then at the end of the day, I tried not to feel guilty about spending approximately 2 minutes praying before [collapsing into] bed.

Needless to say, that wasn't cutting it.

It wasn't always that way. But lack of sleep, a nursing baby, a temperamental toddler, and trying to catch up on everything I couldn't do while I was pregnant made me lose sight of my priorities.

The funny thing is, I need prayer. [We all do, of course.] My introverted self needs time alone, and if I don't get it…I get overwhelmed. Which would explain why I couldn't seem to catch a breathe lately. [Logan's ridiculous work schedule wasn't helping, either, but if I had I been praying like I shouldit wouldn't have been as bad.] And usually, when I actually do spend more time in prayer, it seems like I get more done throughout the day. Funny how that works, eh?

I still have those days where I feel like I'm just losing at life - neither kid wants to nap, I can't finish folding the mountain of laundry without 143 interruptions, the dishes keep piling up despite me washing them all.day.long, and all I want to do is sit on the couch and eat chocolate and drink wine. But if I look to prayer as what gets me through the day, and I actually devote time to it, I find that I can look around at the chaos and not lose my mind. It keeps me grounded. I'm not sure how else to explain it

Sure, sometimes I'm halfway through the rosary when a kid freaks out, or I don't even get through afternoon prayer in the Liturgy of the Hours (a mere 10 minutes, if that) without being interrupted…but still. I still feel the graces when I put forth the effort! We serve a merciful God indeed.

This all feels so silly now that I'm typing it out. Because really, shouldn't I have realized?!

Better late than never, I guess.
"Nothing is equal to prayer; for what is impossible it makes possible, what is difficult, easy...For it is impossible, utterly impossible, for the man who prays eagerly and invokes God ceaselessly ever to sin." - Saint John Chrysostom 
P.S. The Catechism of the Catholic Church has a REALLY good section on Christian Prayer (Part Four). You should read it! Especially Article 2, the Battle of the Prayer...because prayer is, indeed, a battle.

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