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Some of my earliest memories of prayer growing up are with my family.

We prayed grace before meals and had bedtime prayers before my parents tucked my siblings and me into bed. I remember watching my dad faithfully polish our nice church shoes every Saturday evening so they would look nice for Mass early the next morning. The first prayer I memorized as a child was the Memorarae. As my mom drove my siblings and me to school, she taught us the words of this Marian prayer. And yes, I remember how sometimes, when we prayed the family rosary, I would “rush” through my decade because I wanted to get back to my toys.

While my prayer life has shifted and evolved over the years, I still feel such a sense of gratitude for those early experiences of prayer from my family of origin. 

Incorporating prayer into your daily routines should not be treated as the spiritual Olympics. Daily prayer is not about being perfect or “doing” things for Jesus. 

Prayer is about showing up — consistently — to be in the presence of God. Few things can cause more spiritual heartache for Christians than creating an unhealthy spiritual perspective of “do more, be more” regarding a relationship with God.

Being in God’s presence every day will look radically different for all of us. For me, it looks like starting my day in silence for about twenty minutes as I drink my morning coffee. It looks like reading the daily Mass readings or slowly making my way through one of the Gospels. 

If you desire to incorporate prayer more into your life, I would gently encourage you to first sit with this question in your heart: Where do I experience the presence of God?

Starting from this place allows you to reflect upon your experience of God in your own life — where you see, feel and experience him. Allow yourself to be guided by your senses and desires and see where your attention is drawn.

As you sit with that question, here are three different areas to consider building prayer into your daily life. 


The world we live in is fast-paced and noisy; it can leave us exhausted and spent. All the more reason that each of us needs more silence in our lives.

How could this translate to your prayer life?

  • Start your day with silence, perhaps as you enjoy your morning coffee. Let yourself be still.
  • If you have a daily work commute, think about turning off the radio or podcast. Use the quiet as space to talk to God, share your thoughts or feelings or enjoy the stillness. Pay attention more to what is around you.
  • Power down your phone after dinner. Give your phone an evening bedtime and turn it off. Get rid of excess noise and exchange it for more stillness in your evenings after work.


Archbishop Vigneron reminds us in Unleash the Gospel Marker 3.2: “Since all Scripture speaks of Christ, immersing ourselves in the word is a way to deepen our initial encounter and grow in our relationship with him. … As God’s word is dynamic, so must our response be: we take the word to heart and apply it to our lives.”

How could this translate to your prayer life?

  • Read the daily Mass readings. I really enjoy using Give Us This Day as a reflection companion.
  • Think about joining a Bible study at your parish or with friends.
  • Have Scripture displayed around your home so that you are always enveloped in the Word of God. Maybe it is sticky notes on your bathroom mirror (Hi, it’s me!) or favorite verses framed and hung on the walls.
  • It could be as simple as slowly making your way through one of the Gospel accounts of Jesus — even if only for ten minutes a day. 


Part of building prayer into your daily life is that it does not have to be so rigid — you can be spontaneous too! Look for little opportunities to infuse moments of prayer throughout the day.

How could this translate to your prayer life?

  • Stop briefly at 3 p.m. (The Hour of Mercy) Ask for the mercy of Jesus in your life and the whole world.
  • Pray for a different family, friend or situation each day of the week.
  • Randomly text people in your life to ask how you might be able to pray for them right now.
  • Say a Hail Mary every time you see an ambulance or fire truck for the situation.

Jesus, help us to experience more prayer in the little moments throughout the day. May we live the call of Saint Paul to always “pray without ceasing.”