I have always kept my spiritual life hidden. Oh, most people who know me, know I am Christian, but the practices, the daily activities of my walk with Jesus are generally not known by many. I try to live as a Christian, to behave as Christ would want, but I am not a brow beater. And I do not do an extraordinary job of it. I find myself on my knees begging forgiveness on most days.
As the years passed, I eventually just became a sort of Solitary Contemplative. Prayer was my favorite activity. I studied prayer and prayer forms. More and more Prayer became the primary focus of my life. Besides the continual prayer that goes on in one’s head–the conversation with Jesus, who is with you always, I had my formal prayer times. Much of my work I gave to God as prayer and meditation.
When I wake up in the morning, I toss my legs over the side of the bed, and when my feet hit the ground, My first prayer begins. I ask Jesus to guide me through the day, to control my words and actions, To allow me to be a blessing to others that day. I also praise him for the many blessings he has given me, and for the wonderful world he created for me to live in. Also if there is a friend I am praying for, your name will be the first spoken word out of my mouth.
At 6 am I begin my “formal” prayers. I begin with the Chaplet of St. Michael. Most of you know that my goal in all this and for the past 2 years has been to join the Catholic Church. But I have lived as a Catholic for 10 years now or better. I have a small “home altar”, and I light a candle. This Candle contains my prayers, and reminds me all day as I pass it to pray for those I am interceding for. Other candles get lit along the way. I have a votive I light for deep prayers when a friend has asked for prayers. Recently during this time, I invited my family to light a candle and pray for me, so now there are three votives on the altar, unlit, so they can feel free to light one for me, and for their own prayers.
Some have issues with the whole “praying TO angels and saints” thing in Catholicism, but this is merely a misconception. We believe that Heaven is a living place. People who have died in Christ are alive and with the Lord, it would be quite silly if you landed in heaven and were told you could not pray. We are merely asking for angels, the Lord’s protectors to pray for us and assist us, and also those Christians alive with the Lord in Heaven to also pray for us. It is no different than asking someone here on the earth in their corporal state to do the same. It is also a great comfort to me personally knowing that around the world, 24 hours a day, for more than 2000 years these same prayers that I say have floated heavenward continually.
After the chaplet I have 5 minutes of silent meditation. To best hear the Lord speak, one must be in silence. He speaks in a “still quiet voice.” I rest in the Lord and enter His Peace.
Next I say my first rosary of the day. I have to admit the Rosary is my favorite prayer. I studied it for a couple years before I even began saying it. It is so deep and rich and glorious. I also began to make rosaries as a meditation in itself. Simply the rosary is a group of Biblical prayers, said on beads, with 5 meditations on the events of Christ’s life each day. Eventually the soft “Hail Marys” you are saying on the small beads fade into the background and only the meditation on the Lord fills your mind. Mary, the mother of God always leads to her Son.
As you meditate on each “mystery” or aspect of our salvation, the story becomes richer and you gain many insights into your own walk with God.
After prayers I watch the Daily Mass on Television. Since I am unable to drive and do not get out much, and am a solitary kind of person, in this way I can attend Mass without leaving home. I do sometimes take a bus downtown to Mass if I am feeling well enough to accomplish that.
Later in the morning after chores and such are done, I sit down to do my Spiritual reading, The Bible, and usually a book I am reading which allows me some Lectio Divina Right now it is “Meditation on the Passion” Rev. Reginald Walsh OP.
At 2 in the afternoon I stop for “Holy Hour” and spend another hour in Prayer. I say the Divine Mercy Chaplet and another Rosary. Although sometimes I just meditate and save my second Rosary for before bed.
I give you all this background so that some of the things I may say or relay in future posts will make more sense. My life is a life of prayer. Jesus is with me guiding me, holding me, helping me at this time. I am going Home. I am going to see my King.