Friday, July 24, 2009
"If You're Too Busy to Pray, You're Too Busy"
There was a time when I used to get up REALLY early every morning and pray the Rosary. It was about an eight-month period from the time my second child started sleeping through the night, until I found myself pregnant with my third. We live next to a small lake, and if the weather was warm I would sit and look at the water while I prayed. On misty mornings I loved watching the fog dance across the water, as though it was praising God along with me. Other times I would just sit and look out the window and watch the trees and the birds. When I found that my mind was wandering I tried to incorporate those thoughts into my prayer, and even into the mysteries themselves. If I was worried about a sick relative, perhaps the mystery of the visitation helped me remember to call or visit that person. During that time, my best friend had recently given birth to premature twins, who spent months in NICU before they came home; I prayed for them many times, especially when I prayed the joyful mysteries. I treasured these quiet times every morning, and I miss them. I will still pray the rosary occasionally if I'm up early, but not on a regular basis anymore, except maybe during Lent.
I remember talking to our parish priest about this; often, I told him, in the afternoon if I'm tired I think to myself, "Gee, now's a good time to pray the Rosary; I think I'll take a nap." His reply was, "Sometimes you just need a nap." This made me feel less guilty, and I even imagined that Mary must have taken afternoon naps when she really needed them.
Now that it's summer, I don't get up quite as early as I do during the school year. I had time to pray this morning, but what did I do? Checked my email (mostly spam), my Facebook page (nothing interesting posted since 11:30 last night; everyone is still sleeping, duh), and checked for new blogs. I have many things on my to-do list for today, and soon I'm going to need to wake up my kids so I can take my oldest son to swim team practice. I don't know that blogging about praying counts as praying! During the school year I get up just about as early as I did in my daily-rosary days, so why don't I pray then? Lunches to make; gotta feed the dog; the kids need their breakfast; I need to eat my own breakfast; if I don't read the paper now I'll never look at it. Oops, I forgot to check my email! These are my excuses.
I heard a priest on EWTN recently quote Mother Theresa, who, when another priest lamented to her that he was so busy these days that he didn't have time to pray, she replied, "If you're too busy to pray, you're too busy." Unfortunately, many of the things we're too busy doing are time-wasters like watching TV, surfing the Internet (Do I REALLY need to watch that new Harry Potter trailer AGAIN?), or reading trashy novels and magazines. My excuse today? I feel the need to update my blog, and I might not have another chance to do so until next week.
Truthfully, I was about to begin telling you about our amazing trip to Yellowstone last week. We've been home since Monday, and now that I'm finally finished unpacking and the laundry is somewhat under control, and I've posted the pictures on Facebook, I'm itching to tell you all about it here! I have also seen some interesting things posted on other blogs I want to share with you too; and I've read a couple more books I'm hoping to tell yu about. When I logged in and got ready to start typing, I thought to myself, "I wonder if I should pray the Rosary instead?" Hence this blog post.
My son in up, and I need to get moving. Maybe I'll have time for a quick Divine Mercy chaplet before the day gets too busy for praying.