Do you have guilt concerning your prayer life?
Do you feel as if you never pray “enough” or give the Lord the time He deserves?
Oh, I feel that way.
I recently read a passage out of Nora King’s, Thirty Days to a Better Prayer Life. She says, “When you look at Jesus’ life, you will see that there were many times He withdrew from the hustle and bustle of life and the crowds of people to pray. We need to follow Jesus’ example by stealing away in prayer on a consistent basis.”
So good. Mmm.
But to be honest, reading this created such guilt in me. “Lord, I do need to do this more. Just you and me sneaking away to pray.” I dream of quiet places of solitude. Jesus and I having long talks over coffee.
But it is so stinkin’ hard to find the balance some days. I have three boys. Three of which wake up at the crack of dawn and don’t go down until dark. And if I spend all of my quiet time praying in the morning what about Bible reading? Or study? Or worship?
I took this dilemma to my mentor.
I asked her, “Are my expectations too high for my prayer life? I wish I had an hour everyday to pull away and pray. A certain place in my home designated for solitude and prayer. I am having a hard time doing that. I feel defeated in it.”
Debbie confirmed that my expectations probably are too high for where I am in life right now. She agreed that pulling away with the Lord for extended periods are necessary at times, but more the exception than the rule in this hectic season of life.
She encouraged me, “Do spiritual things while you are doing natural things. When you are cleaning the kitchen, listen to a sermon. While you are folding laundry, pray out loud. Feed your spiritual self all day long. Stay nourished in the things of God.”
So freeing to hear. My prayer life will change with each season of life. I just need to do the best with what He’s given me today.
When I get that long time with Him – bonus.
This is a prayer tool I have used since January. Simple…nothing fancy, but it has really helped me in organizing my thoughts for prayer…
I just filled this out yesterday and thought I’d share.
The first line of each day, I write down a person in my immediate family. Second, I write down someone or something specific I want to pray for or about. My closest friends, needs they have, etc. I am still working on this month’s, but you get the picture. (Pun intended)
And throughout the day, let us be reminded to “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing and give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
His will for you. To rejoice, pray and give thanks…without ceasing.
Whether on your knees before him in a quiet place, in a church pew, driving in the car or while folding laundry, Sesame Street blarring in the background…rejoice always, pray and give thanks.
With this, He is well pleased.
I was just telling a girl that I can "compartmentalize" to much, and you put it in great words to do "spiritual things while you are doing natural things." Good stuff! And your prayer calendar reminds me of my prayer binder…love it! Keeps me on track and praying through things/people that are important to me! Love you!
Oh girl, I completely know how you feel. And I feel a little liberated reading this post! Granted, my kids are a little older, but it can still be difficult. Part of my post today was about sneaking away! You have a wonderful mentor who give such great advice! And your calendar is a great idea, too. Thanks a bunch for sharing!
Thanks so much for posting this. It helped me immensely to know I'm not alone in where I'm at and that it's OK to be where I'm at. Not that I can't always keep trying to seek opportunities for a little "bonus" time each day, but if all I can do is pray while folding laundry and my just about 4 year old son is watching his shows then so be it! My husband is not saved (yet!) so I have an added dimension of not exactly "sneaking" prayer or reading in the Word time but we are still working on a balance of me getting what I need and him being OK with me taking some quiet time. Would you please pray I am able to strike a balance? Thank you and many blessings to you!!