I started with my husband’s Missal book from when he was a child to learn the basics. I already knew the Lord’s prayer from attending a Disciples of Christ church some when growing up, but was most excited at first to learn the “Hail Mary.” The Hail Mary is wonderful to pray during times of need, fear or just anytime you need comfort. Mary is a comforting presence.
I followed that with the “Glory Be” and then the prayers of the Rosary, including the Apostle’s Creed; Hail, Holy Queen; and Fatima Prayer.
After I got the basics down, Matthew Kelly’s “Rediscovering Catholicism” book (head over to my Catholic Resources page for more books) inspired me with some additional daily prayers:
- I love this one in the face of temptation: “God, I know what is good and true, but I am still attracted to what is self-destructive. Give me strength, be my strength.” I repeat that last sentence a lot when tempted to sin or other non-productive behaviors.
- To see what God wants from you today: “Lord open my eyes so that I may see.” And “What are you calling me to do and calling me to be?” Great prayers upon waking or before work.
- When you sin: “Lord, if you wish, you can make me clean.”
- When in doubt: “Lord I believe, help my unbelief.”
- When you’re not sure what to pray: “Lord, teach us to pray.”
- In fear: “Be not afraid.” (This is repeated MANY times in the Bible; we need not fear if we are following “the way”)
- During fasting: “One does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes forth from the mouth of God.”
Some others I’ve come upon through reading, Mass and more:
- In service to others: “Lord, send someone today whom I can serve.”
- To your Guardian Angel: “Angel of God, my Guardian dear, to whom God’s love commits me here, ever this day (or night) be at my side, to light and guard, to rule and guide.” A nice prayer for children.
- One from the Benedictine tradition upon waking: “Lord open my lips, and my mouth shall proclaim your praise.”
To keep myself focused on what is most important (ie NOT work), I pray the Liturgy of the Hours, a set of prayers said at specific times throughout the day, as much as I can daily. Almost always upon waking and upon going to bed, as well as 9 a.m. and noon and rarely 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. vespers (the witching hours of motherhood J). I LOVE the Liturgy of the Hours and am so glad I found my way to them. They are full of the Psalms, which are incredibly poetic, beautiful and comforting and they remind you of our greater purpose continually throughout the day.
Do you have favorite prayers that you’ve found along your journey? Please share!