“A Better way to start your day…”
The above, among other things, is a tagline for a morning program on Catholic radio. As we arrive at a kind of midpoint in summer (perhaps not on the formal calendar of seasons, but surely in terms of realities like school recess), may I suggest that we engage in an individual and corporal exercise of examining: how do I currently typically start my day?
Is the Lord taking center position, or do I place him somewhere toward the periphery, on an “as needed” or “as-able-to-fit” basis? What major benefit will I experience by making even a small adjustment in my order of the day? Over time, I have probably received more positive feedback on prayers that appear in this column than other content. I would like to offer, in print here, two examples of a “Morning Offering” prayer. The first is a classic from the generations. The second, I believe, adds some excellent thrust in terms of our apostolic faith— we are sent daily to make a difference!
O Jesus, through the Immaculate Heart of Mary,
I offer you my prayers, works, joys, and sufferings of this day for all the intentions of your Sacred Heart,
in union with the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass throughout the world, for the salvation of souls, the reparation of sins, the reunion of all Christians, and in particular for the intentions of the Holy Father this month. Amen.
My Lord, God of heaven and earth – Father and Creator, Son and Redeemer, Holy Spirit and Sanctifier – I adore you and love you with all my heart. I thank you for creating me, redeeming me, calling me to the Catholic faith, and watching over me last night. I offer you on this day my prayer, my work, and my struggles, my sufferings and my joys. Enable me to do everything out of love for you and according to your will. Make me steadfast in living my Christian vocation, patient in suffering, courageous in proclaiming my faith; fill me with wisdom on life’s journey and charity in dealing with others. Free me from sin and from all evil. May your grace always remain with me and with all who are dear to me. Amen.
Another aspect of our daily spiritual lives that is well worth considering is: how often do I take advantage of intercessory prayer? How actively do I call upon the saints in heaven AND the saints-in-training on earth, to lift me up and intercede to God Most high on my behalf? Right now, at our parish level, the prayers of numerous religious communities of men and women (monasteries, abbeys and the like) are being tapped for prayers, for the intention of our parish to advance in faithful living of the Gospel call of Jesus. The Communion of Saints is a cannot-fail army of prayer warriors, available on demand to intercede for us. Why would we waste such a precious resource.