Wednesday, April 17, 2013

A Thought On Prayer and Your Time

Who remembers prayer time at bedtime?  I do.  I also remember occasionally praying before meals - usually because we were in the presence of people we thought we should pray in front of or people who usually prayed before a meal. I remember praying at church and I remember praying before meals when I went to camp.

How much of your daily time do you spend in prayer?  Let's run through some "basics" and how long it takes to say them.

"Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep and if I die before I wake, I pray the Lord my soul to take. Amen." ~ 9 seconds (this was the start of my bedtime prayers as a child)

"Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep.  May angels watch me through the night and wake me in the morning light.  Amen." ~ 10 seconds

"In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, Amen.  Bless us O Lord and these thy gifts which we are about to receive from thy bounty through Christ our Lord. Amen.  In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, Amen." ~ 20 seconds

"God is great. God is good.  Let us thank Him for our food.  Amen." ~ 5 seconds

Okay - so since this is a Catholic blog we'll go with the Catholic option for meal time and the longest "standard" bedtime prayer you can get away with in public. 

One at each meal and bedtime = 1 minute, 10 seconds

1/1440th of your day in prayer.

I will freely admit that fitting in prayer is hard, especially when you aren't used to it or fell out of the habit.  I will also share that there have been days that the only addition to the above prayers has been "Lord, help me get through this!!!!" and that's okay too.

But outside of chaos and especially IN chaos, we need to be in prayer.  The word "prayer" occurs over 100 times in the Bible, the word "pray" another 100+ - so one could easily surmise it should be something we take seriously.  1 Thessalonians 5:17 tells us to "pray without ceasing".

Now, I'm a HUGE fan of the Rosary and that's what prompted this post.  I have family coming in 2 days to my home who are not Catholic and I was discussing with some other Catholic ladies how to approach our "Family Rosary" with them here and I began to muse on the amount of time it takes to pray a Rosary vs. the amount of time in a day.

For the record, it is 1/72nd of your day.  That's it.  Just 1/72 - less than 1 minute per hour of the day when it's all crunched out.

Is that really too much to ask?  I 1/72 of time for the Lord and His Blessed Mother too much of your time?  Can you think of a better investment for your soul you could make with 1/72 of your day?


  1. I've been thinking and writing about prayer a lot recently because I feel it is so crucial for a mother to have a solid prayer life. My prayer life is something that has taken me years to build up to so just starting somewhere and adding on to it a little at a time is a great way to get there. I would definitely NOT recommend trying to do add a lot of new things at one time as you're likely to get frustrated.

    At this point in my life I am able to consistently do: 20-30 min of morning prayer, daily Mass, daily rosary with family, 30 min of prayer before bed, sometimes spiritual reading throughout the day, an occasional chaplet, and many spontaneous prayers during daily activities.

    Include your family in as many of the prayers as you can and then everyone is covered :) Good luck with your family this weekend and God Bless.

    1. I will freely admit with an infant that is SO not where I am at. We're 30+ miles from our parish so daily Mass isn't an option - but I'm doing the best I can.

      I "sneak in" prayer when I can. It's in the little moments of the day - thanking the Lord for his blessings when I'm preparing food, when a child is understanding his assignments, when the traffic light is green.

      Some day I hope to have the opportunity to have that kind of time to devote to "real prayer" - but for now, this will have to do. :)

  2. I agree! Check out my post. Just 2% of our little to give and so much to receive!

    1. I agree 100% with your blog article. It is so little to give and we do receive so much...but it's more than that for me. This is my little piece of heaven in my day - when I'm at peace and when I feel loved. I love this part of my day when I pray the Rosary with my son. It really makes the world this side of Heaven so much easier to tolerate.