So many times I’ve been crawling into bed at the end of a long, busy day filled with classes, meetings, homework, exercise, and friends and realized that the only prayer I said all day was during my morning quiet time. I’ve found that starting off a semester with good habits is the best way to keep them going through the crazy times of midterms and finals. Are you also struggling to spend the time that you want to communicating with God? It’s important to set aside time, but it’s also a great practice to add in little prayers to your daily activities.
After all, we are called to “pray without ceasing,” aren’t we? Check out some ways I’ve found to incorporate more prayer into my packed daily routine!
Pray first thing and last thing, even if it’s quick
Make sure you’re starting and finishing your day with prayer. It doesn’t have to be a lengthy Pslam-like piece of verbal art, just an honest address to your Creator. I’ve even found that I struggle to start my day off on the right foot if I haven’t prayed, and I invariably sleep better after I’ve committed my worries to God.
Pray at each meal
If you’re eating with friends, this can be a great way to encourage them as well. If you’re eating “alone,” it’s a great reminder that you’re never alone! Plus, you have to eat daily, so this is a good way to have a tangible reminder of a time to communicate with God on a frequent basis.
Pray while waiting for class to start
I tend to either try to answer emails or review homework before class, or while away my time on Facebook or Pinterest. But what could be a better use of that awkward too-short-to-do-anything too-long-to-do-nothing period before class starts to lift up the people around you in prayer?
Pray on the bus or while walking to class
I’m a big believer in taking the earbuds out, zipping my phone in my backpack, and enjoying the fresh air while I’m walking to class. I often find myself just sort of automatically praying while I’m walking betweenBiology and Physics, whether it’s for the challenges of the day, someone that I saw who looked upset, or just a simple thanks for the glory of the outdoors, the shelter of campus buildings, and the opportunity to learn.
Pray while brushing teeth or showering
Funny story: I have a friend who has super toned calves but is too busy to exercise very regularly. I asked her her secret one time, and she said she does calf raises every time she brushes her teeth. That tells you that you can accomplish a good amount during that 5ish minutes every day! Plus, since it’s at the beginning and end of every day, it’s a good time to be centering yourself in Him. Showering is a similar scenario, and although pretty often I like to just chill out and enjoy some Ed Sheeran in the shower, at the end of a frustrating day there’s nothing like standing in the warm water, washing your hair, and pouring out your heart to the One who loves you more than anyone else.
Pray while jogging or working out
Actually, my runs and workouts tend to involve prayer anyways (“Please God, let me not barf right now”), but seriously. Anytime I see someone at the gym who looks distressed (like emotionally distressed, not just beat from a killer workout), or I overhear someone talking about a problem, I try to pray for them between my next set. Ditto for when I’m running on a trail or at the track. Also, when you’re exercising is a great time to thank God for the amazing body that he has given you.
Pray while you’re in line
Instead of being frustrated at the wait or staring at your phone (I’m really down on staring at phones, if you can’t tell — life is too short!) pray for the people around you, the people working at the restaurant/store or literally anything else!
Pray when you finish an in-class quiz early but can’t leave class yet
This is a great time to doodle (if you become famous those drawings could be worth a lot of money to a lucky janitor!) but it’s an even better time to pray for your fellow test-takers, the test administrator, and while we’re thinking about them, pray for those janitors too!
Pray while you clean your room (if you clean your room, haha)
Nothing helps me feel like my life is on track like having my room in order and unburdening my mind to God. Why not do the two at the same time?
Hope these ideas were helpful to you. Comment with some of your favorite ways and times to pray during the busy times of the school year!