As we seek to build virtue, the Church offers us three great practices to do this: fasting and abstinence, almsgiving, and more prayer. You have probably already guessed that prayer is going to be the most important, because it is the foundation for all the rest.
We often hear that prayer is a conversation with God, and it is, and we most likely think of it in terms of asking for something and either getting it or not. The act of praying is in itself of great benefit, as God will not be outdone in generosity. So, when we decide to sacrifice another activity, especially one that we like, in order to pray, that takes on a lot of value in God’s eyes. Just carving out the time for prayer and then trying our best to pray for that time, in spite of what we may feel the results to be, will gain great graces for us. I just realized, we may be a little foggy on what a “grace” actually is. It is a supernatural gift of God that enables us to do all of the good that we should do. When we at least try to pray, the graces that God gives us will help us to do all of the tasks that we must accomplish to fulfill our vocation. For most of us, that is being a mother or a father, a husband or a wife. So these graces will help us to be patient with others, give us energy to do even the things we dislike, and help us to understand the difficult things that we must learn and study. A prayerful person is an efficient and efficacious person who really gets things accomplished. Grace is the greatest enhancer known to mankind. A famous saint once said, “If I don’t have time for prayer, then I won’t have enough time for anything else.”
Hopefully we have all signed up on the “Formed” website and are watching “A Lent to Remember”. On the same site, also available for free, are three programs that can help us learn to pray. The easiest one to begin with is the “Lectio—Prayer”. It will teach us how to use the Lectio Divina prayer style, and this will help us to know scripture better and also build a better relationship with God as we gain strength and resolve to fulfill our goals.