How Dryness in Prayer is the Most Important Adventure

How Dryness in Prayer is the Most Important Adventure

I recently started rereading the very humorous Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes, the story of a crazed and impoverished Spanish noble who sets out with his much saner “squire” Sancho Panza in search of adventures to revive the chivalry of knighthood. Each of his adventures turns into a misadventure, probably the most famous of which being the run-in with the windmills. Don Quixote sees thirty or forty large windmills in the distance and declares to Sancho Panza that they are giants that he means to engage in “fierce and unequal combat.” Sancho tells him that they are windmills but Don Quixote responds by telling him that he is clearly not used to the business of adventures and that he should pray while he fights them. Don Quixote ends up seriously injured and...

Obstacles in Prayer: “I am distracted”

Obstacles in Prayer: “I am distracted”

Men and women alike struggle with distractions in prayer. “I wonder if they responded to my email.”  “What time is it? Is it time to get back to work?”  “Should I make spaghetti for dinner or get take-out somewhere?”  “If I get a B on the next exam is that enough to get a B in the class?”  Let’s admit it, distractions are a part of our human nature. While listening to a homily, engaging in an online class, praying the rosary, or reading this blog, you might catch yourself getting distracted dozens of times. Oftentimes you might not even notice that your mind has wandered off. To add to this, we live in a fast paced, technological world where we are constantly being bombarded by distractions that are vying for our next click. Can we find peace in the midst of so...

But is it really true that I don’t have time?

But is it really true that I don’t have time?

Ah! If only supermarkets stocked time at a good price, or even on sale! Time should be considered a basic necessity, available to all of humanity, right next to the bread and Cheetos. Yet it never seems to be enough; we don’t have time to meet up with people, to do fun things, to finish our tasks, to go to the pharmacy or even to the doctor, to clean the house, to work out … let alone to pray. When we’re invited to cultivate a daily prayer life, how often does the assumption seem to be: I’d like to but I can’t? Or Sister, maybe you have time because it’s your job, but I really don’t have time. In this journey that we are making in search of friendship with God through prayer, I would like to begin by reflecting on the theme of...

Lectio Divina: Encountering God through Scripture

Lectio Divina: Encountering God through Scripture

This month, we will be looking at another method of meditation that can help us in our daily encounter with the Lord. As we heard from Sr. Clara in December, a prayer method is an instrument to help us pray, and we cannot get so caught up in learning the right technique that we end up missing God’s presence! The Catechism of the Catholic Church reminds us: There are as many and varied methods of meditation as there are spiritual masters. Christians owe it to themselves to develop the desire to meditate regularly, lest they come to resemble the three first kinds of soil in the parable of the sower. But a method is only a guide; the important thing is to advance, with the Holy Spirit, along the one way of prayer: Christ Jesus. (CCC 2707) Lectio divina is a method...

A Space for God

A Space for God

Have you ever noticed how often we divide up the spaces in our house? Each room has its purpose and even in the same room there can be different spaces: a space for studying, for resting, for having fun, for eating a meal… This division can be really useful and can help us to concentrate on the duty at hand, but it remains a division. Is there a space that unites? A space that, even while maintaining its distinction, integrates everything else into one movement of life? Yes, there is a space that does this: the space of prayer. In the previous Spring of Water, Sr. Clara mentioned the importance of finding an adequate place for prayer, before explaining the method of the 3 R’s. This time, we want to look more in detail at this “prayer corner”: why is it important...

From the Five W’s to the Three R’s

From the Five W’s to the Three R’s

How can I pray? At this point in the journey towards friendship with God through prayer, each one of us could (and should, if he or she has had the opportunity to follow the monthly spiritual suggestions) respond to the famous 5 W’s seen below, with his or her own experience (i.e. put the previous months’ suggestions into practice). Let’s see if this is true: Who is involved in your prayer? What is prayer? When have you prayed in recent days? Where have you prayed since you started this journey? Why do you pray? If we have difficulty finding these elements in our daily life, we can take a couple of weeks to review and put into practice the suggestions of the two previous Spring of Water reflections, and then come back here. St. Thomas also had additional...