There’s a lot of focus these days on meditation and mindfulness. We all seem to feel overwhelmed and unfocused. We tend to overdo it and overstress. We are overconnected on the internet and we overdo it every day.
What if this mindless state was also negatively impacting our prayer life? How many of us come to prayer only to find our minds racing and unfocused so much that our prayer life is also not intentional?
There’s no doubt, we live in unfocused and stressful times. However, as many writers who write about mindfulness, getting calm is an important way to deeply engage in many meaningful activities in our lives. For Christians, prayer is one of these very important aspects of our lives that may be undermined by distractions.
Its quite wonderful when we can take something as seemingly simple as mindfulness and bring it into our prayer life to help us become more focused on God and what’s important. Prayer should be a time to connect deeply with God. There is no room for distraction.
Over the years, I have discovered that mindfulness helps me tremendously in my prayer life. I no longer do feel as distracted when I sit to pray. Further, while I’m praying, I am able to focus fully on God and all that he means in my life.
Here are a few ways to bring meditation and mindfulness into your prayer life:
- Go into a quiet room and close the door.
- Set a timer for five to ten minutes. (You may want to set it for longer if it takes longer to find your center or if you’re just starting out.)
- Sit and turn inward. Close your eyes to block visual distractions.
- Take a few deep breaths.
- Recall something peaceful, like a riverbank or a nature scene. Breath deeply.
- Keep focusing on your breath until the timer goes off. (If your mind keeps switching from one thought to another, as it’s most likely to do, keep returning to your breath.)
- Sit for a few seconds after the timer goes out and see how you feel.
- Take a few deep breaths. Now you can start praying.
By taking these steps, you will pray wholeheartedly. You will also engage with God and keep your mind focused on praying.
Try meditating before you pray. And let me know how you do in the comments below. I’d love to hear from you!
Lent is a time to deepen your prayer life. Meditation and mindfulness might help you become more focused while praying.