my latest prayer gimmick

It’s that time of year again! LENT!

I seem to be looking for ways to get back on track in my prayer life …throughout the whole year, but Lent is always a great time to refocus!

sticker stamp tiltI realized I wrote a similar post daytimer prayer back in 2012! The truth is, I often meander astray and I resort to any strategy I can think of to recommit to a healthy prayer habit.

Over the years, my best and most consistent prayer has been a daily routine of reading Scripture or spiritual reading, summarizing a key point or quote that struck me…and writing my prayer from there. I know that I need a quiet place, preferably with no distractions or interruptions (usually when everyone else is asleep) and I begin by praying for guidance from the Holy Spirit. It’s important to collect my thoughts, package up all my little worries and distractions and write them down, reflect on what I have just been reading or ask Jesus a question about it…and write down whatever comes into my head. If I’m really earnestly seeking the guidance and the inspiration of the Holy Spirit…I really believe that the words on the page are not all my own and I feel an awesome connection with the Lord.

For what I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate. Roman 7:15

Exactly! If praying is so good and I often feel this awesome connection with the Lord through good solid, focused prayertime, why do I stray? Why do I forget to pray? Why do I stop putting in the time for focused, private prayer?

I get distracted.  I get caught up in the busyness of the day and the demands of everyone and I forget how important prayertime is for my heart. and my soul.

So what do I do about it?

Besides asking the Lord and our Blessed Mother to remind me to pray…with the Prompt Me to Pray Prayer

I wrack my brain for new ways to motivate me to stick to my prayertime commitment.

And you know what? There is something in the checklists and the chore charts that motivates me! I know that it sounds pretty immature to want stars beside my name like in grade 2, but somehow the satisfaction of checking something off my list is a tangible incentive. It doesn’t offer the same reward as the actual prayertime and deepening relationship with the Lord.  I know that I don’t earn God’s Love by the number of prayer journals I fill. I know that even a perfect record of daily prayertime doesn’t really impress anyone but myself, but it’s a way of pushing a healthy habit.  If I can stick to it for 3 weeks or the 6 weeks of Lent, who knows?…maybe it will stick for good!

I know it sounds awful to put prayer on my to do list…but I feel like as long as the prayer itself isn’t a rattling off of some memorized words like a chore, it just helps me plan and budget my time.

So here is my new gimmick!

prayer sticker stamp

I have made a sticker-stamp. I have made a compact little to do list of my biggest and most important challenges that I need to try and cover every day …to make them a habit! Ideally, this would be a rubber stamp…and one day I’ll get one made and stamp out a whole dollar store notebook for my own customized prayer journal. So far, www.RubberStamps.com is the only print company I can find with reasonable prices, willing to use my custom artwork, but those rascals don’t ship to Canada.

(Do you live in the States? Do you want a stamp too? 
Maybe we can cut a deal? 
Email me at mmcconkey at rogers d o t com)

Another alternative would be to make a template of the stamp and print it on sticker paper, placing a sticker on each page

…but I think a stamp would be may more fun.

Sticker_StampSo here is what it means.

Obviously prayer is one of my main concerns. I want to be able to check prayer for at least 5-15 minutes, uninterrupted, focused prayer time. The “please help me through this traffic” or the “please help my kid with that science test” or the “please get me through the 4pm-6pm crazy” don’t count…but one of my goals is to be praying throughout the day in addition to a dedicated prayer time.

Exercise, because at least for now it seems like a necessary nasty that I should be doing every day.

Eating, not because I have to remember to eat, but because I need to control that hobby a little bit. My goal is to serve myself smaller portions, not justify sneaking seconds…and try to eliminate snacks. Unhealthy snacks…because I need some snacks to function and reduce the grumpy…so at least for now, healthy-ish snacks don’t count.

Tasks, because I needed some flexibility to meet my ever-changing challenges and once I invest in the rubber stamp, I want to use it forever. I have a never-ending list of not-so-fun tasks ranging from tax time prep to purging the basement shelves, making arrangements for upcoming conferences and tackling the single sock epidemic …

 

What would you include on YOUR stamp?

If I can make a cool rubber stamp out of it…I’ll share the template with you!

Leave a comment or email me! (mmcconkey at rogers d o t com)

 

 

Comments

  1. I’ve been working on a Creative Day Planner and have been thinking about creating a stamp as well. My stamp would include “self-care”, which for me encompasses prayer time, reading and rest, breakfast (because I tend to miss that one), walking, and workout(20 min.). You can see my planner page on my blog at http://www.trypsych.com/drpattisblog/.

    I’m enjoying your bog!

  2. Mary Ellen Bibeau says:

    Good Morning. I would like to offer up my address to have your stamp sent to and I would be happy to forward it on to you in Canada. I have just recently found your blog and I enjoy it very much. Let me know if I can help you out with your stamp.

  3. You’re so funny – exercise is NOT a necessary nasty! For me, it’s the one thing that keeps me sane 🙂

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