crucifix w candle and wood background - smallWritten by: Mark Gamez

The past few days have been a little bit depressing. With work piling up and time passing by, I had no room for anything else, so it seemed fair enough at the time that I should pray less or only when I finally have the time. Somehow, I knew within my heart that this was just rationalization at its best.

What wasn’t obvious was that I was the primary victim of my neglect. In fact, it wasn’t long until I became anxious, irritated, stressed, and over worked more heavily than when I was praying through all my troubles in the week. Now, nothing seemed to go my way, by my standards, and in my own time!

For most of you reading this note, my life in the past few days is relatable to your own experiences. We have all, at some point, weighed on a scale the importance of prayer in our day to day, and for the majority of you, you had failed just as I have in placing prayer as the most important thing on the scale.

In our lives, the temptation to neglect prayer is the most common temptation; it is more common than even the temptations of the flesh, of the world, and of the devil. Consequently, the neglect of prayer becomes the gateway for all other temptations and sin itself. Without prayer, we are in more danger than a soldier thrown into battle without his armor, his shield, and his weapon; we are naked without prayer and open for every other temptation.  In our nakedness, the criticisms of others are more powerful because we cannot receive them with what prayer assures us: the confidence of being able to change for the better; more worse still is that we begin to condemn ourselves mercilessly. Slowly, we forget God’s love for us and begin to reason out that we are unworthy of God’s blessings and love.

When we finally come to our limits, we are faced with frustration and deep depression, and we ask: Could it be that God has forgotten me? Could it be that He is punishing me and no longer loves me because I neglected to pray to Him, to speak to Him, and to tell Him that he is the most important person in my life?

The only hope in this state is obvious: prayer. However, this prayer should not be a prayer just to appease the Lord so that He might help us in the way we tell Him; instead, it is more of a quiet surrender and silent listening to hear what He desires to tell us.

In this silence, in this stillness our hearts will hear the only words that can nourish it in the midst of our busy lives. Only in this act of surrendering all our failures and disappointments will we receive everything that will make us successful and happy while we work.

So Listen to Him while you do your work so as to do it His way. And when the day is finished, offer everything to Him, even if it is not complete because with prayer, all tasks are finished.



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