Start Your Prayers With…

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A good start goes a long way, whether it comes to your schedule or your prayer time.  

Think about it- you get up at a reasonable time in the morning, have a healthy breakfast and things just seem to fall into place as your day moves along.  It’s nearly a guarantee that the rest of the day will go well.  All because you got off to a good start.

Your morning prayer time is very, very similar.  We know that a good prayer time to start the day is valuable … the catch is this: how should you start?

There are about a thousand ways you could start your prayer time.  I imagine that many are quite effective.  Some could be elaborate (candles come to mind) while others could include music.  

In today’s post, I’ll simply share what I do and what works for me. If it’s useful, copy it immediately!
For me, what sets the tone and really centers me is to repeat the ancient words of the Church from the Liturgy of the Hours.  If you're not familiar, the Liturgy of the Hours is sometimes called the "prayer of the Church" and religious brothers, sisters and ordained ministers are required to pray the Hours at various times during the day.  The Hours form a framework around which the rest of the day gets scheduled.  

For me, it looks like this.  In my quiet spot in my home office, I close my eyes and say the following:

Oh God come to my assistance, Lord make haste to help me…

These words instantly put me into a mood of prayerfulness.  They act as a trigger for my mind, my heart and my body.  Knowing that the Church also uses these words brings some context to my time of prayer.  I know that holy men and women have uttered these same words for thousands of years.

If a good start is so important, what phrase or mantra can you use to start out your prayer?