10 Minute Prayer Challenge
Praying is hard.
The actual act of praying – being completely enveloped in the Holy Spirit, filled with peace, resting in the Word – that’s beautiful. Sometimes, it’s easy to fall into the arms of God and rest with Him. Sometimes (more often, at least for me) it’s a struggle to stop moving and just be still.
I think it’s like a run – the hardest part is tying up your shoes and getting out the door. The first few minutes, the struggle to find a pace and your groove, to move in step with your favorite song, those are the ones that require discipline and self-control. After that, my feet just move, pushing me far and fast and allowing me to achieve the goal of a long run.
That’s what prayer can feel like. Uncomfortable at the beginning, but once you finally surrender, it is sweet and life-giving.
In college, I found the time and the desire to pray pretty easily. I could walk down the street to our church, and rest in the sanctuary for hours at a time. Daily prayer was a given, so ingrained in my way of life that it seemed difficult to comprehend how it could become so foreign.
Today, my time has been cannibalized by “to-dos”. My life has changed – now I work every day from 8-5 at least, need time to catch up with friends, to work out, to cook, to travel. That hour for prayer isn’t as accessible.
It’s harder – but that doesn’t mean it’s less important.
I know prayer is important. I can feel its effects when I make time to connect with Jesus when I open my heart to the movement of the Holy Spirit. We know it’s good, but it’s still so hard to commit to the time each day.
A few years ago, I told the women in my small group that I was working to pray for 10 minutes a day. The next week, during our highs and lows, I shared that I hadn’t quite completed my five minutes a day. My girls wasted no time in calling me out – they remembered my promise and served to call me higher. I’m grateful for them because they were right.
That evening I knew I needed to do something to open my heart to prayer again, and it was going to take an actual plan.
Bring in the 10 Minute Daily Prayer Challenge.
20 year old me would have laughed – come on, just ten minutes?! But the reality was that I was starting at Ground Zero (maybe Ground 3.) Ten minutes was more than I was used to, and it was time for me to buy into the way that my prayer could impact my life. So, I created a new routine, designed to bring these 10 minutes into every day.
Each morning, I wake up, brew my Nespresso (best gift of my life I’m obsessed ask me about it anytime), and open Jesus Calling. After I read the day’s devotion, I open my Regnum Christi email with the daily Gospel and questions to reflect on – then I set the timer for 10 minutes of silent prayer.
I won’t lie – oftentimes it’s very hard. I’m a doer, and I like to do things. Sitting on a couch in silence as the first shot of caffeine courses through my body is a difficult thing to do – but it’s the most important part of my day. Setting aside my morning for prayer helps me to remember my priorities – chief among them, my relationship with God.
I encourage you to try the 10 Minute Daily Prayer Challenge – close out of Instagram, click into airplane mode, set the timer on your phone, and… just sit. Rest. Talk to Jesus about what is stressing you out. Tell Him what you are afraid of. Talk him through your hopes and your joys.
Then… listen as He speaks.
It might be just a quiet whisper, or it could be loud and clear. You might have to open scripture and hear Him through His Word. Whatever you do, share with Him and listen. Sometimes it will be like pulling teeth – like the timer can’t go off fast enough. That’s okay. You’re doing it for the days that the timer goes off and you remain, in the quiet, journaling or just resting with Jesus and allowing His peace to fill you up.
Go try the 10 Minute Challenge and let me know how it works for you! It’s transformed my mornings, my days, and my year, and I can’t wait to hear how Jesus uses this time with you to change your life.
More Like This
Are you stumped for what to do for Lent this year? Sick of giving up sweets or Instagram for the third year in a row? Last year I decided to do away with giving something up and instead opted to add something new. I read Blessed is She’s Lenten devotional, began the...
“Each time of life has its own kind of love.” - Leo Tolstoy, Family Happiness and Other Stories This weekend we celebrate the day of love, a day marked by pink hearts and chocolates and flowers. For many, it's a beautiful reminder of the love in their lives. For...
I love Valentine’s Day. Anyone else or is it just me? During this time of year, red and pink are everywhere - pink is my favorite color! I love rom-coms and chick flicks - Valentine’s Day gives me a good excuse to start watching a bunch in early February, and I try to...
Jane Kennedy lives in Washington, DC. She is a graduate of UC Santa Barbara and works in criminal justice reform. When she’s not working or writing, she’s probably catching up with friends on FaceTime, getting lost in Rock Creek Park, quoting C.S. Lewis, or trying to recreate Salt and Straw ice cream at home.