How should we pray?

Mission Lab

We should pray with (1) attention, (2) a spirit of humility, (3) a deep desire for the graces we need from God, (4) a loving trust in God’s goodness, (5) resignation to God’s will, and (6) perseverance.

1. We should pray with attention by forming in our minds the intentions of praying well and of fixing our minds on God. It is only when our distractions are voluntary, coming from a careless lack of interest in what we are doing, that our prayer ceases to be a prayer. God asks only that we do our best. He does not hold us accountable for what we cannot help.

2. We should pray with a spirit of humility, with a consciousness of our complete dependence on God and our helplessness without Him.

3. We should pray with a deep desire for the graces we need from God. We should also seek His help in removing whatever may be hindering His grace from working in our souls.

4. We should pray with a loving trust in God’s goodness. This means to pray with childlike confidence that God does hear us and that He will answer us.

5. We should pray with resignation to God’s will because He knows what is best for us and He loves us. Jesus taught us to say, “Thy will be done.”

6. We should pray with perseverance. The man who never quits praying for grace and salvation is the one who is certain to go to Heaven. “Pray constantly, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you”(1 Thessalonians 5:17–18). We would not grow discouraged if we remembered that whatever God does, He does in His own way and in His own best time. Our confidence should endure. Only in Heaven will we know how many blessings have come to us in response to prayer which, at the time, seemed to go unanswered.