Many things in our life right now are disconnected - our stove, our heat, the floorboards, and my attempts to blog, just to name a few. However, these all pale in comparison to the lack of connection I have with God in prayer.
It'd be one thing if God was the one "pulling away" - allowing me to experience the dryness of a mature life in Him. But it is me who finds it unbelievably difficult to put myself aside and just pray! For months now I have found excuse after excuse as to why I am "too busy." I waste more time on the internet, with things to keep my time occupied and with thinking simply about God, that I don't have time left just to spend with God. From a new marriage to a new home I find even more excuses and I let my prayer time become back seat to other "important" things and I justify my excuses with,"God will understand."
Excuses will not get me into Heaven. Only a life spent in union with God can.
My retreat kicked me into gear once again, and although my attempts are better than before, it's still not to the level where I have an intimate relationship with God. So, why do I fight the urge to pray? What is keeping me from the joy I find just being with God - even when God says nothing and I feel nothing? I could blame it on the attempts of Satan to pull me away from holiness. However, I need to look to myself, because only I can make the choice to pray.
One reason I find it hard to pray is that, without a firm purpose of setting my thoughts on God, I get easily distracted.
Solution: not to worry about the distractions and every time I have them, brush them aside and not focus on them
This may sound weird, but when I sit down to pray (like my rosary tonight) my nose runs. No joke. (weird, I know) It's distracting and I feel like I'm spending more time with Kleenex than with God!
Solution: use it as a sign that God is close!
I have "no time" because I fill it with everything else, like reading a magazine, surfing the internet, watching morning TV, and my schedule is packed.
Solution: schedule in my prayer time, as well! Confess my lack of dedication when I go to Confession and have my Priest hold me accountable.
Now, these are all nice solutions, but solutions don't mean anything unless I use them!
I had a meeting with a spiritual guide that I met on my retreat and she said something that struck a cord with me. I explained to her that, in college, my faith blossomed and I desired to be with God above all else. And now, I am pulling away. She said I'm in the adolescence of my faith. This doesn't mean that I'm young or immature, it just means that I'm seeking to rebel. Interesting. After adolescence does come a turning point, however. I have the choice to follow my path of rebellion which will eventually lead me away from Jesus whom I used to long for. Or, I have the choice to wake up and cut off the selfishness that adolescence brings. With adulthood in the faith comes responsibility, and our only choice is to find time in our lives to let God in and allow Him to transform us.
This passage fits well and is from one of my favorite books in the Bible, Ephesians:
So I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking. They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts. Having lost all sensitivity, they have given themselves over to sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, with a continual lust for more.
You, however, did not come to know Christ that way. Surely you heard of him and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus. You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.