Monday, April 11, 2011

When Prayer Is Difficult, You Are Not Alone

Sometimes prayer is hard, I am struggling this Lent with consistency and practice.  I have books, wonderful prayer cards, opportunities abound for Stations of the Cross, additional daily masses but sometimes the prayers are just quick whispers - it has been discouraging.

Feeling a little lost, I turned toward the Saints, and in my readings I was reminded of the periods of spiritual dryness that afflicted many of them. I am encouraged by their words, I hope you are encouraged as well. 

"...when I feel nothing, when I am incapable of praying or practicing virtue, then is the moment to look for small occasions, nothings that give Jesus more pleasure than the empire of the world, more even than martyrdom generously suffered.  For example, a smile, a friendly word, when I would much prefer to do nothing at all or look bored..." St. Therese of Lisieux

"The great method of prayer is to have none. If, in going to prayer one can form in oneself a pure capacity for receiving the spirit of God, that will suffice for all method." - St. Jane Frances de Chantal

"For me prayer is a surge of the heart, it is a simple look towards Heaven, it is a cry of recognition and of love, embracing both trial and joy." - St. Therese of Lisieux

And for me this was the most helpful~
"Never leave prayer because of dryness or difficulty.  Remain before God entirely plunged in His holy love, detached from all desire for your own pleasure. It might help to send out little darts of love, such as, 'O my God, my true Good, I am yours!' and then remain in peace." - St. Paul of the Cross

Fast. Pray. Give. Lent ~ the journey to joy. 

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