Prayer is one of those basic activities every Christian disciple longs for, even if not knowing how to do it. After all, Jesus invites his disciples to be his friends:
No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you. (John 15:15)
Now, to be a friend with someone comes with some demands, though the friendship makes the demands seem easy to fulfill. Who doesn’t want to spend time with their friends?? The best way for friends to communicate with each other is by spending time with each other and having a conversation.
Many people, desiring to be disciples of Jesus Christ, do not know how to spend time with their Friend. This must be corrected! I’m turning to the wisdom of St. Francis de Sales, who lived in the 16th and 17th centuries and was well-known for his spiritual advice. He wrote a great book, Introduction to the Devout Life, which was meant for the average person living in the world. (You can find it here.) St. Francis was known to be a great spiritual guide and his wisdom is quite expansive.
My next few posts, prefaced by “Prayer Workshop,” will highlight a few of his chapters concerning briefer periods of prayer that a disciple may take throughout the day. For the most part, these times of prayer do not require deep spiritual knowledge, nor do they require heaping amounts of time, since our spiritual master knows how busy are the people of God. Still, friends of Jesus want to spend time with Jesus and must learn how to do so.
It’s also worth noting that these next few posts will not cover the entirety of the spiritual life and are not meant to. Instead they are simply showing ways which will allow all disciples, no matter how busy, to spend more time with their Lord and Friend.