The Prayer Process

The videos for this discussion can be watched here: The Prayer Process. 
The accompanying text for the videos is available below the 
video player in the link.
What is Prayer? 
Saint Therese of Lisieux (the little flower) would tell you, “For me, prayer is a surge of the heart; it is a simple look turned toward heaven, it is a cry of recognition and of love, embracing both trial and joy.”
St Therese of Lisieux, 15 years old.
St. John Damascene, more simply defines prayer as, “a raising of one’s mind and heart to God.”  (Defide orth. 3,24:PG 94,1089C).
The introductory video this week hits home as to why we should pray, and the benefits to raising our hearts to God for just 10 minutes a day. We hear of Matthew Kelly’s own experience when a teenager, going through the day thinking everything was fine, and yet he had a growing restlessness in him. It wasn’t until someone helped him understand that restlessness he felt wasn’t because something was wrong, but rather because something was missing — God. 
The solution to finding God is pretty simple. We have to make room for Him. And by doing so, we open the door to true happiness. Therefore, by just taking ten minutes to place ourselves before the Lord in prayer, we open that door that will help us grow in real happiness.
It’s worth a go, don’t you think?  
Our session this week looked at the Prayer Process, a seven-step process that helps us develop a pattern of prayer. It is only one of many ways we can spend our 10 Minutes of Prayer with the Lord, and if we haven’t yet developed our own habit of prayer, it will help us obtain one. We also were challenged to take a 30-Day Prayer Challenge where we commit to 10 Minutes of prayer each day for thirty days, and see what happens in that time. 
Are you ready to take the Challenge?
Go sign up on our 30 Day Prayer Challenge page. 
Not ready to take the Challenge? 
If you’re still not convinced to pray 10 Minutes a day for 30 Days, take a moment and read how Jesus himself snuck away from his followers to be alone with the Father. If it’s good enough for Jesus …
  • In the morning, while it was still dark, he got up and went out to a deserted place, and there he prayed. (Mark 1:35)
  • After he had dismissed the crowds, he went up a mountain by himself to pray. (Matthew 14:23)
  • Now more than ever the word about Jesus spread abroad; many crowds would gather to hear him and be cured of their diseases. But he would withdraw to deserted places and pray. (Luke 5:16)
  • Jesus took with him Peter, James and John, and went up on a mountain to pray. (Luke 9:28)
Still not convinced? The Saints too have heaps of reasons why we should pray:
A soul arms itself by prayer for all kinds of combat. In whatever state the soul may be, it ought to pray. A soul which is pure and beautiful must pray, or else it will lose its beauty; a soul which is striving after this purity must pray, or else it will never attain it; a soul which is newly converted must pray, or else it will fall again; a sinful soul, plunged in sins, must pray so that it might rise again. There is no soul which is not bound to pray, for every single grace comes to the soul through prayer.
–St. Faustina
Prayer is an aspiration of the heart, it is a simple glance directed to heaven, it is a cry of gratitude and love in the midst of trail as well as joy; finally, it is something great, supernatural, which expands my soul and unites me to Jesus.
–St.Therese of Lisieux
“Pray as though everything depended on God. Work as though everything depended on you.”
–St. Augustine
You pay God a compliment by asking great things of Him.
–St. Teresa of Avila
It is simply impossible to lead, without the aid of prayer, a virtuous life.
–Saint John Chrysostom
Virtues are formed by prayer. Prayer preserves temperance. Prayer suppresses anger. Prayer prevents emotions of pride and envy. Prayer draws into the soul the Holy Spirit, and raises man to Heaven. 
–Saint Ephraem of Syria
“Purity is the fruit of prayer.”
–Blessed Mother Teresa
Prayer is the place of refuge for every worry, a foundation for cheerfulness, a source of constant happiness, a protection against sadness.
–St. John Chrysostom
Let us all resign ourselves into His hands, and pray that in all things He may guide us to do His Holy Will … When thoughts of this or that come I turn to Him and say: “Only what you will, my God. Use me as You will”.
–Blessed Mary MacKillop
‘He who prays most receives most.’
–St. Alphonsus Maria de Liguori
My little children, your hearts, are small, but prayer stretches them and makes them capable of loving God. Through prayer we receive a foretaste of heaven and something of paradise comes down upon us. Prayer never leaves us without sweetness. It is honey that flows into the souls and makes all things sweet. When we pray properly, sorrows disappear like snow before the sun.
–Saint John Vianney
“Private prayer is like straw scattered here and there: If you set it on fire it makes a lot of little flames. But gather these straws into a bundle and light them, and you get a mighty fire, rising like a column into the sky; public prayer is like that.”
–Saint John Vianney
‘We must speak to God as a friend speaks to his friend, servant to his master; now asking some favor, now acknowledging our faults, and communicating to Him all that concerns us, our thoughts, our fears, our projects, our desires, and in all things seeking His counsel.’
–St. Ignatius of Loyola
During mental prayer, it is well, at times, to imagine that many insults and injuries are being heaped upon us, that misfortunes have befallen us, and then strive to train our heart to bear and forgive these things patiently, in imitation of our Savior. This is the way to acquire a strong spirit.
–St. Philip Neri
How often I failed in my duty to God, because I was not leaning on the strong pillar of prayer.
–St. Teresa of Avila
Prayer ought to be humble, fervent, resigned, persevering, and accompanied with great reverence. One should consider that he stands in the presence of a God, and speaks with a Lord before whom the angels tremble from awe and fear.
–Saint Mary Magdalen de Pazzi
We must pray without tiring, for the salvation of mankind does not depend upon material success . . . but on Jesus alone.
–St. Frances Xavier Cabrini
“The prayer most pleasing to God is that made for others and particularly for the poor souls. Pray for them, if you want your prayers to bring high interest.”
–Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich
Let him never cease from prayer who has once begun it, be his life ever so wicked; for prayer is the way to amend it, and without prayer such amendment will be much more difficult.
–St. Teresa of Avila
“Much more is accomplished by a single word of the Our Father said, now and then, from our heart, than by the whole prayer repeated many times in haste and without attention.”
–Saint Teresa
My daughter…why do you not tell me about everything that concerns you, even the smallest details? Tell Me about everything, and know that this will give Me great joy. I answered, “But You know about everything, Lord.” And Jesus replied to me, “Yes I do know; but you should not excuse yourself with the fact that I know, but with childlike simplicity talk to Me about everything, for my ears and heart are inclined towards you, and your words are dear to Me.” (2; 921)
–St. Faustina, Divine Mercy in my Soul
Prayer is the inner bath of love into which the soul plunges itself.
–Saint John Vianney
Without Prayer nothing good is done. God’s works are done with our hands joined, and on our knees. Even when we run, we must remain spiritually kneeling before Him.
–Blessed Luigi Orione
We must pray without tiring, for the salvation of mankind does not depend on material success; nor on sciences that cloud the intellect. Neither does it depend on arms and human industries, but on Jesus alone.
–St Frances Xavier Cabrini
Read some chapter of a devout book….It is very easy and most necessary, for just as you speak to God when at prayer, God speaks to you when you read.
–St. Vincent de Paul
Are you making no progress in prayer? Then you need only offer God the prayers which the Savior has poured out for us in the sacrament of the altar. Offer God His fervent love in reparation for your sluggishness.
–Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque, from a letter
It often happens that we pray God to deliver us from some dangerous temptation, and yet God does not hear us but permits the temptation to continue troubling us. In such a case, let us understand that God permits even this for our greater good. When a soul in temptation recommends itself to God, and by His aid resists, O how it then advances in perfection.
— St. Alphonsus Liguori
[The devil] dreads fasting, prayer, humility, and good works: He is not able even to stop my mouth who speak against him. The illusions of the devil soon vanish, especially if a man arms himself with the Sign of the Cross. The devils tremble at the Sign of the Cross of our Lord, by which He triumphed over and disarmed them.
–Saint Antony Abbot
We must pray without ceasing, in every occurrence and employment of our lives – that prayer which is rather a habit of lifting up the heart to God as in a constant communication with Him.
–Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton
Prayer ought to be short and pure, unless it be prolonged by the inspiration of Divine grace.
–Saint Benedict
“In order to succeed in it (prayer), it should be done when we first awaken, when our whole being is calm and recollected. We need to make our meditation before anything else.
–Saint Peter Julian Eymard
“As far as possible, you should pray in quiet and silent devotion. Try to have a favorite topic of prayer, such as a devotion to the passion of Jesus, the Blessed Sacrament, awareness of the divine presence; go directly to Jesus without too much fuss.
–Saint Peter Julian Eymard
“Have confidence in prayer. It is the unfailing power which God has given us. By means of it you will obtain the salvation of the dear souls whom God has given you and all your loved ones.” Ask and you shall receive,” Our Lord said. Be yourself with the good Lord.”
–Saint Peter Julian Eymard
Let us unite ourselves with the Saints, and like them find true happiness through prayer. 
Now, go sign up for the 30 Day Prayer Challenge!

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