As we celebrate the season of Advent and prepare to celebrate the coming of our Lord and Savior, we’re called to still our hearts and go even deeper in our relationship with Him.

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One reason some people don’t make time/much time for prayer may be that it feels useless. They can’t focus and are too distracted. So, they just give up altogether.

Fighting for your prayer life is truly a battle. Thankfully, there are some steps that you can take so that your conversations with God are a priority and a joy. You can have a vibrant prayer life!

All of these steps have helped me in some way and some have been taught to me by people older and wiser than myself!

Determine a place conducive to prayer. Having a set prayer corner or room works for a lot of people. Maybe you are in a bustling household and going to the chapel is necessary for you. In my own life, I’ve found that I really like to go on prayer walks and talk with the Lord.

Pray throughout the day. Remember to pray before meals (no matter where you are!), when you hear of situations needing prayer, even praying with people that bring up needs or difficulties to you. Commuting on the metro, car, or on foot is also a great time for prayer.

Also, have set times for prayer. More than that, keep them. It’s important to have structure, too. Just like you set aside time to talk to your spouse, child, and other loved ones, you must set aside special time to spend with your Creator. Otherwise it may not happen.

Keep a pen and paper handy. If something comes to mind that you need to do, or some sort of inspiration, write it down. Then move on and continue in prayer. If you don’t write it down for later and move on, it will stay in your mind and you’ll find it difficult to focus in prayer.

Keep a prayer log. You can keep a list of people and other intentions to pray for, to give you more focus and remind you of who you have promised to pray for. Noting answered prayers is also a great step to remind you of the faithfulness and greatness of God!

What prayer forms draw you close to the heart of Jesus? Some like silent prayer. Others thrive on singing. Praying with Scripture using the Lectio Divina method allows you to soak up the Word and its implication in your life. The Examen is a prayer form that many have latched on to. Others like to write letters to God. Attending Mass or a church service is a form of prayer. There are many, many different forms of prayer. Find the ones that fit your personality.

Find accountability. We need help on this journey. Find someone that you can count on to ask you how your prayer life is going–and will give you a kick in the pants when needed. Even better, they will pray with you.

I hope that these tips will enrich your walk with the Lord and enable you to have a thriving prayer life! Blessed Advent!

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