May 25, 2010

The Changing Face of My Prayer Life

You can read more about and from Sarah Reinhard, a Catholic wife, mom, and writer at Just Another Day of Catholic Pondering. She's on Twitter as @peerybingle. This editor has an email in which Sarah notes, "I'm not kidding when I say that those tweets every morning have salvaged my prayer life." Amen to that!

I used to hate it when a colleague of mine would parade around spouting versions of, “The only thing constant is change.” It was his standard response to any conversation that flirted with complaining about adjusting to life or markets or challenges. Maybe he was right, but what rubbed me is the way he seemed to delight in it.

What was to enjoy about things being different, day after day? And, I certainly didn’t realize how much I’d come to embrace change. Now, a few years, a spouse, and a couple of kids later, I know the wisdom of that former colleague’s mantra.

I don’t like change. I don’t embrace it and I don’t throw a party when I see it coming. I’m more likely to crawl under my desk with a blankie, curl into a fetal position, and scream.

In the past few months, I’ve been dealing with a big change in my prayer life. I used to get up in the wee early hours, pray Morning Prayer and maybe a rosary or special novena, and then do some spiritual reading.

The kids would wake up long after my prayer time was over and I'd greet them spiritually armed for the day (at least in theory). Then, right before Easter we found out the joyous news about a new baby coming and I discovered, much to my chagrin, that my morning prayer time would be sacrificed to mandatory sleeping and bucket-hugging practices.

Don’t get me wrong: I’m thrilled to be the host for new life. We had been trying for months, as a matter of fact, and I was beginning to wonder if maybe our lives would move on, past the child-bearing years. It’s just that I miss my morning prayer time. Working devotions in while juggling breakfast bowls and whiny requests is quite a bit different from the retreat-like atmosphere I had created.

But different can be good. When I recently set up my phone to receive the Virtual Abbey’s Morning Prayer tweets, I discovered that I could, in fact, pray Matins again, even while keeping watch of a newly potty-trained tot in the bathroom. Sometimes it’s 10:00 before I remember to check or have time to spend five minutes on that prayer, but it’s better than nothing.

In fact, it’s food for my soul. Just as I’ve received support through the years, through a number of family trials and sorrows in the Catholic blogosphere, so too have I found a haven of prayer in the Twitterverse.

Image: "The Mother's Prayer" 1880 Lithograph

1 comment:

Mary said...

I've never been able to wake up early enough to pray without my kids. They seem to sense that I'm up and, before I've settled in, they are there asking for breakfast. Virtual abbey tweets sound like a good idea and could be the shot in the arm my prayer life has been needing.