Monthly Spiritual Examination
I’m trying something new out within my prayer life. I always am wanting to have prayer intentions as well as people to pray for, but I can never seem to remember everyone I should be praying for. Its frustrating for me.
So, last night, I sat down with pencil and paper, and began to write down people to pray for. I broke it down into several categories:
People to Pray For
Rosary Intentions (per decade)
Divine Mercy Chaplet Intentions (per decade)
My Prayer Life
For Mass Intentions, I do my best to rotate different people or other intentions so that I am not offering up the same intentions every week. There are 3 intentions that I do repeat, and I grab 3 intentions off the top of that list and send them back to the bottom. The 3 intentions I always offer up are 1. For Souls in Purgatory. They need prayers, and the offering up of Mass for them is quite possibly the best prayers we can say for them. 2. Myself and my fiance’s relationship. I feel this is important as it is the most important human relationship I can have. If our relationship goes south, that is never ever good. 3. Pope Benedict, my bishop and all the priests that I know. I feel this is self explanatory.
In people I should pray for, these are all my friends, family, acquaintances, co-workers, and anyone else I feel like praying for that has a place in my life. This will be a long list, and it seems to only grow, not get smaller. Sometimes I wish it shrunk, but I have to think of all the importance these people have played in my life at some point.
I offer up each decade of both the Rosary as well as the Divine Mercy Chaplet to someone or group of people that are possibly the most important in my life. For example, the first decade of the Rosary goes to myself, as I need prayers, the second decade goes to my fiance, fourth decade goes to my family and my fiance’s family, and so forth. I have rotated who each decade has gone for a lot, but it started off that I had difficulty finding people to pray for at first, and now, I have to group it up just to cover everyone that I want my Rosary offered up for.
Finally, my prayer life. This is the most important part of each and every single one of our lives. Its important to figure out how you are going to give your time to God each day/week/month and to stick with it. The problem I am having is that at one time I was doing a LOT on a daily basis, and now I don’t do as much. It frustrates me, but I try to load myself up like I did, I do it for several days and then I give up because its too much. I need to rebuild myself, but my pride wants me to load up everything I had. So…I have come up with a list of what I need to do on a daily and weekly basis.
Now, keep in mind, that each one of us will have a different list. Not to mention, you can change it however you want, you don’t have to do it verbatim like I am, this is what I’ve discerned that I need to do. Now, my plan is to keep track daily of what I have done and not done. In a month, I will do my examination again, to find out what I did well on and what I didn’t do well on. If it turns out that I’m failing on 2 things, then next month I will be forced to drop one. If I have done everything daily/weekly, then it might be time to add another item. Start off slow. If you aren’t doing anything right now, pick one thing and do that for a month. After a month, add something else.
Morning Prayer/Reflection (Daily)
Divine Mercy Chaplet (Daily at 3PM)
Rosary (Daily w. Fiance)
Examination of Conscience (Daily before Bed)
Night Prayer (Daily before Bed)
Eucharistic Adoration (Weekly)
Bible Reading (Weekly/ Sat/Sun)
So, starting today, I will start checking everything off. In a month, I will see how I’m doing. Give it a try! I think this will be a good way to start good habits in prayer and your relationship with God will grow immensely.