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 | By Pete Burak

Don’t Wait to Be ‘Holy’ to Start Praying

I’ll never forget the moment I met my wife. The initial jolt of attraction generated a nearly all-encompassing desire to get to know her better. This led to long phone calls (much to my chagrin she didn’t have texting), meals in the dining hall, distracted study sessions and eventually a daily rhythm of interaction. Our friendship, trust and intimacy grew because of a combination of time, commitment and consistent communication.

Why is it so hard to pray every day? By nature of our baptism and our ongoing faithfulness, God has made a home in us. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, our relationship with the Triune God is more intimate than any human relationship we have, including our spouses, children and best friends.

Our Savior and Lord and his power reside in our hearts and souls, and yet we often struggle to pay any attention to him. We forget he’s there. We downplay the eternal importance and daily impact of being a temple of the God of the universe.

We remember to text our friends, email our bosses, relate to our family, but beyond the occasional memorized prayer, we can go days without acknowledging him.

Imagine our lives if, every day during Advent, we set aside time to be with the Lord and we consciously noticed him throughout the day.

Instead of relying only on standard moments of prayer (grace before meals, Sunday Mass, etc.), what if we dedicated time each day to conversation with him and intentionally recognized his presence in the million little moments throughout our daily schedules?

“Thank you Jesus for being with me during this meeting.”

“Lord help me have patience right now for these crazy kids you’ve given me.”

“Father, what do you want me to say right now?”

“Come Holy Spirit!”

These are simple and beautiful messages for the most important relationship in our lives. Scripture tells us that God hears the cries of his people. He’s never distracted, never bored, never annoyed. Jesus longs to take us deeper, and intimacy requires communication, so don’t wait to be “holy” to start praying. Let’s remember that Jesus loves us, and he will always answer our text.

Pete Burak is the director of i.d.9:16, the young adult outreach of Renewal Ministries. He has a master’s degree in theology and is a frequent speaker on evangelization and discipleship.

This article was originally published December 2021.