How Can I Pray When I Have No Time?
Author: Br. Eleazar Palma LC | Source: Catholic.Net
One of the greatest challenges that Catholics face today is trying to find time to pray. No doubt, much of it has to do with the fast-paced lifestyle that is characteristic of our culture especially in the 21st century. Much of it has to do with us as well though. I have heard it all, “I’m too busy,” “I have the kids to take care of,” “my job,” “school and studies,” the list goes on and on. Let me put it this way. If you, as a practicing Catholic, can’t find even 10 minutes in your entire day to speak with God, something is wrong with your daily routine. If you truly love someone, you make time to be with them, speak to, and listen to them. The same applies to our relationship with God, actually even more so. Regardless, I don’t want to speak exactly as to why you should find time to pray but how you can find time to pray. If you struggle constantly to set time apart for prayer then I think this can help you.
In reality, we do not need to make sure we find hours upon hours of time in front of the Blessed Sacrament in order to have a fruitful prayer life. It is of course important to spend time in adoration with our Lord but sometimes life does not give you that pleasure. If you really are struggling to set time apart to speak with God I think you should look into the practice of the presence of God. A religious brother of the Carmelite Order developed and wrote reflections on the idea in the 17th century. It is actually quite simple. In absolutely everything you do throughout your day, remember to speak to God. Whether you are working, cooking, walking to your next class, doing homework, about to play a sport, whatever it is just speak to God. Speak about anything. The food you are cooking, the awesome conversation you had with a neighbor, your worries about the incoming bills next month. Anything and everything!
Sometimes we forget that prayers is simply conversation with God, it is speaking and listening. God delights so much in hearing how our day is going, on how we feel, on what we are doing, etc. If you form the habit of speaking to Him in the most ordinary circumstances of your day, you will find it easier to speak about much deeper things. Your worries, your temptations, your sinfulness, your hopes. The idea is that you are trying to remember that God is truly with you always and you are acting on that truth by conversing with Him, you are literally practicing the presence of God.
From personal experience with this simple form of prayer, I have found that it brings peace and joy knowing that my God is always with me wherever I go or whatever happens to me. If everything and everyone else goes south on you, you have a deep belief that He is there. This form of prayer also helps one to stay more focused when larger times of prayer are made available. If you are thinking and conversing with God throughout your day in the little moments, you will more naturally do so in the larger moments of prayer.
This method of prayer at first can be difficult, as with any type of prayer. However, once you form the habit of constantly speaking to Him throughout your day in any situation or moment, you will experience peace knowing that you have made it a priority to listen to and speak to God.