time – the recipe

Much of the time, I feel as though there is not enough time for me to do the many things I need to do and the many more things that I want to do. When I was younger I thought I would have time later for many of these things. But now I realise that later is already here. Somehow I need to find a way to make more time…

…and then this week a friend uploaded (Facebook) a Peter Kreeft quotation: “lack of prayer is the cause of lack of time.”

I had to repeat that a few times before I really got what he is saying since I usually think that a lack of time is one of the causes of a lack of prayer. Perhaps the author is right and our back-to-front thinking is the problem?

I’m a bit too skeptical to simply accept this idea as a fact so for the past three days since I first read the quotation I have tested it. My experiment was this: whenever I felt as though I was pressured by time in any way, or stressed, or racing for a deadline, I made myself physically stop for sixty seconds and I prayed. This was especially challenging yesterday morning when I was hurrying to catch a bus, but I stuck with my new rule, stopped right where I was the moment I realised I was feeling pressured, and prayed for a minute.

In these couple of days I would estimate that I have made myself stop and pray a dozen times each day. The results of my little experiment are remarkably satisfying for me and suggest that the quotation is correct: prayer actually seems to create more time and less pressure in a day. I think I have found the recipe for making more time!

I’m interested to hear what you think. Use the “comment” space below to share your experience.

ps…and the bus was late so i had plenty of time anyway!


7 Responses to "time – the recipe"
  1. I will give the O’Connor Pause a go myself, because I have discovered that I haven’t “missed the bus” either. I am 71, alive, in good health, and conscious that there is plenty of work God still has for me to do in these days of tremendous crisis in the world. In fact, I reckon that the longevity of my generation in the West may have the precise purpose that the healthy superannuated faithful devote a great deal of their time to prayer and the promotion of the faith. Maybe the “pressure of time” for the older person may involve also the sense that as our energy is waning we may be justified in putting the feet up permanently, But no, we’ve got to stay on our toes; society has allowed us not to have to slave for a living any longer and so we can live full-time for the Lord and use the prayer pause (together with the tool of the judicious nap) to keep on keeping on and do a Simeon and Anna waiting on the Lord. There is a lot to pray for, especially as fewer and fewer are convinced of the need and the capacity for it that we have if we are willing. Let’s call it the Golden Oldie Never-Too-Late Syndrome, or the Back Burner Fires Up Syndrome!

    • Take heart Adrian, there are many signs that our prayers are being answered with a strong resurgence of faith, especially among the young, in many parts of the world. I see strong signs of this in our own Christchurch diocese as well. There is a significant number of young people in their 20’s and 30’s who are deeply committed to Christ in the church. I will blog on one aspect of these new signs of faith tomorrow.

    • A pleasure to hear from you Peter. I’m up to day 5 now taking a minute to be still and pray whenever I find myself rushing. It works!

  2. Thank you for very timely reminder. I find time running away as I get older too. Stopping to say a prayer and to have a chat does wonders. Special prayers and Blessings John.

    • Thank you for the prayers and blessings Gabrielle. It is always good to hear from faith-filled OLV parishioners like yourself. I am happy that you found the “time” reflection helpful. It certainly helped me! I pray every day for the readers of this website.

  3. I read recently that faithful practice of the classic ‘Jesus Prayer’ results in experience of time’s infinite capacity to extend (or something like that). So I persevered and am beginning to find out what that means. Remembering that, and resuming the Jesus Prayer whenever I’m pressured, and always getting wherever on time.
    And if we’re faithful to silent prayer time every day, God gradually
    reorganises not just our time but our priorities.

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