“Lord Jesus Christ, I surrender everything to you—my health, my thoughts, my plans, my desires, my whole life. Thank you for your welcoming arms and loving smile. Thank you, Jesus, for your desire and your power to make me whole!”
“O divine Master, I want to respond to the grace you are offering me right now. Forgive me for the times I have not opened that door and tried to keep you at a distance. Lord, I want to be open to your will for my life today and always!”
Five Ways to Sanctify Your Day
1. Spend Time in Prayer in the Morning Trust me, I know how hard it can be to drag yourself out of bed in the morning. The feeling of grogginess can be hard to shake. But is important to start the day with prayer. In my own experience, my day is productive and peaceful in direct proportion to my ability to get out of bed and spend time in prayer and spiritual reading. When I do this, I find myself more peaceful, more patient with others, and more recollected to God’s presence throughout the day. But when I hit the snooze button, the rest of the day, including my interactions with others, seems to suffer.
I know it can be difficult to know what to do when you make time for prayer, so I will share my own morning routine in a future post.
2. Say A Hail Mary When I sit down at the computer, my first impulse is to start anxiously checking emails and reading my favorite news websites. Instead of giving into this impulse, however, I have gotten in the habit of saying a Hail Mary before I do anything else—many times before I even turn on my computer. I ask Our Lady to bless my day and guide my priorities. My work day is inevitably less stressful and hurried when I start it in this way.
3. Say the Angelus The Angelus is a beautiful, time-honored prayer that reminds us of the miracle of the incarnation and the importance of conformity to the will of God. It is also a great way to pause, turn your heart to Our Lord, and take a deep breath, so to speak, in the middle of a hectic day. Traditionally, it is prayed at the noon hour, so maybe you could start your lunch break by praying it.
We don’t all have jobs where we can pray the Angelus, but if you do, I would encourage you to set an alarm and pray it tomorrow.
4. Pray the Rosary The rosary is one of the most popular and well known Catholic prayers, and for good reason. When prayed with concentration and devotion, it is one of the best prayers we can pray. Our Lady of Fatima asked all the faithful to pray the rosary daily, so it should be the one prayer we manage to pray, even if we can’t make time for anything else.
Consider praying the rosary after dinner. It is a great way to spend time with Jesus in Mary at the end of your day. If you have a family, pray it as a family. If you can’t find time during the day, try praying in the car on the way to work. Whatever you do, pray the rosary.
5. Examine Your Conscience Before Bed Sin is a reality, and chances are, we are saying, thinking, and doing things that are displeasing to God throughout the day. If you don’t think so, you are deceiving yourself. Go to bed with a clean conscience by examining yourself daily. Pause before bed, cast your mind’s eye over your thoughts and interactions with others, and ask yourself if you’ve done anything displeasing to God. Then, think of Jesus crucified, full of love for you. Tell him you are sorry for your failings and resolve to do good by saying an act of contrition.
"Dear children! Also today, with hope in the heart, I am praying for you and am thanking the Most High for every one of you who lives my messages with the heart. Give thanks to God's love that I can love and lead each of you through my Immaculate Heart also toward conversion. Open your hearts and decide for holiness, and hope will give birth to joy in your hearts. Thank you for having responded to my call."
(Later this evening I will include my audio reflection)
Tuesday Evening Mass Homily
"At the moment of death, saints, like Christ, feel as if God has abandoned them. Yet, at this moment they fervently call upon God and they die because of their longing for Him. Therefore, in a certain sense the cause of a saint's death is not only physical illness, but also spiritual hunger. They die because of their overwhelming desire to see God face to face."
(Open Wide the Door to Christ, pg. 53)
At an important point in the life and work of Mahatma Gandhi, a missionary gave him a book that contained the four Gospels. This of course, was the Indian leader's first exposure to Christianity. He read the Gospels with great interest, and was convinced that the principles taught by Jesus could resolve all of the political, social and economic problems of his country.
Gandhi had to travel throughout Western Europe in order to muster support for an independent India. Traveling through Christian countries, he was dismayed only to conclude that the Gospels are wonderful indeed, but he did not see anyone living their teaching. For this reason, Gandhi never converted to Christianity.