This was published on November 30, 2007
I've been thinking a lot about prayer lately. That however is the problem, I've been doing way too much thinking about prayer and not enough praying. I wonder why time and again I do this to myself. I know the value of prayer, I've seen the fruits of it in my own life and the life of others, yet I constantly get in these phases where I don't do it. And then I wonder why I'm feeling like crap, stressed out, and begin to doubt God's plan for me in my life. Every time I get in a funk I realize, hey I haven't been praying. I keep telling myself the solution is simple, all I need to do is quit not praying and pray. But is it really that simple?
I constantly make excuses for why I don't pray. "I've just been so busy, I don't have time." Well wouldn't you think that because I have so much going on, that that is all the more reason to pray. But the reality of it is that prayer can be scary, because when we pray we are forced to really look at our lives. We are called to really face what is going on inside us, our weakness, our sin, our true selves are revealed to us when we pray. Prayer can change us and this can be scary because we so often get too comfortable with who we are. Lack of prayer so often shows our lack of trust in God.
In my life that is honestly what it boils down to. I'm afraid to pray lately. There is a lot in my life I need to change. A lot of things I need to face, virtues I need to work on, conversion I am in need of. Things God maybe calling me to that I don't want to do. The idea of Holiness seems so attractive to me, yet I'm so often not willing to put the effort it takes into becoming Holy. I have an entire shelf of Spiritual reading that I need to do, I am working on my Masters in Theology, taught Religion for 5 years and still have not read the Bible cover to cover. I'm thinking I need to get on that.
This last week has been so hard. I got back from an amazing break in Wichita. I got to spend time with so many people I love. I got back to Denver and it just finally hit me harder than I ever thought about the fact that all of this is real now. I'm not on vacation, I really live here. I never thought I would miss Wichita as much as I do, but I do. I won't act on this, but the thought actually came to my head that I should quit my grad. program after the Spring and move back to Wichita. Seriously what am I thinking? That would not be a smart move. It is honestly as if all the peace I felt about moving here has been ripped out from under me. I know that is not the case, it is just that I haven't been praying and the devil is just really messing with me. I also came back to two jobs that really are not all that exciting. I can honestly say that most days of my teaching career I was excited to get up and go to work. I despise my Youth Ministry job. I work mostly with 7th graders who are just not fun to be around. I have some time with the High Schoolers but it is hard to really do anything when I'm only allowed to work 15 hours a week. I enjoy Totus Tuus but it is so mindless and tedious right now that I am looking forward to the Summer where I get to be out in the parishes with the teachers and kids. I'm still loving my program but I am honestly terrified of taking finals in two weeks. Papers I could handle, but after 5 years of being the one grading tests and not being the one taking them I have to say I'm a little nervous. I've also had a cold all week.
It's been rough, but the thing that amazes me is that as I look on everything I'm feeling and going through I am upset at myself for not praying. I need to get my butt to adoration and give all of this to Jesus and His mother. But like I said it is scary. What if by some freak chance God is telling me I need to move back to Wichita. I highly doubt that is the case, but it's scary to face those realities some times. But I need to man up and sacrifice. I need to surrender. I need to be in the presence of my King. I need to get back to daily mass, I need to get back into the Liturgy of the Hours, and I need to start making Adoration and prayer a priority. Prayer needs to by our life line. Deciding to pray is simple but it is not easy. So pray for me and I will pray for all of you!