prayers, works, joys …

Maggie “reading” Bible stories to Rachel in the back yard.  That’s a joy.

Lately I’ve been taking ten seconds to pray the Morning Offering each day.  For my non-Catholic friends* (or Catholics who haven’t heard of it), here it is:

O Jesus, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I offer you my prayers, works, joys, and sufferings of this day for all the intentions of Your Sacred Heart, in union with the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass throughout the world, in reparation for my sins, for the intentions of all my relatives and friends, and in particular for the intentions of the Holy Father.  Amen.

I don’t really “count” this as my “prayer time” each day – do the rest of you also struggle with the idea of what “counts” as having had your prayer time? – but it’s helpful.  If I don’t get a chance to have a “real” prayer time (how many times can I inject quotation marks into here?), it makes me glad to know I at least spent ten seconds in prayer.  Or if it’s a busy morning and I just haven’t had any prayer time yet, it’s helpful to see this posted on my fridge, take a deep breath, and get a little prayer in before the next kid wails about how hungry she is.

It’s also helpful sometimes just to pray someone else’s words.  And to just send a prayer up rather than have the more complex “conversation with God” type prayer time that’s my favorite.  Sometimes I just don’t have any brain power for a conversation!  But I can usually pull it together to say these words and try to mean them.

I also happen to think it’s a great prayer.  Parts of it are over my head – what does it even mean to offer something through the Immaculate Heart of Mary?  – but I like the idea that my “prayers, works, joys and sufferings” all have meaning and are all worthy to be offered to the Lord.  And just saying the words “for the intentions of all my relatives and friends” helps me to recall, very very briefly, some of those intentions.  There’s a lot more in this prayer than what I currently take from it, I’m sure, but that’s what I like about it now.

*Any non-Catholics reading this (hi KB!), I hope there’s something you can take from this even if this particular prayer is too Catholic for you!  And I’d love to hear if there’s anything similar to a Morning Offering in your church tradition!

PS – my current “real” prayer time is usually the Blessed is She devotional, which I get in my email each day.  I highly recommend it.  Also, a recent Blessed is She reflection included a list of “aspirations,” which are super-short phrases of prayer like “Come Holy Spirit” or “Jesus, I trust in You.”  Another great way to fit prayer into your day 🙂

God bless you all today!


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