a week of daily mass and adoration
Back in the spring I entered the Catholic Church after a few decades of skepticism and seeking, having been a devout Southern Baptist for several years in my youth.
But last week I found myself really feeling that I've had a lazy approach to prayer for a while, and that it's been foundational to some issues in my life. So I started up a flexible routine including a daily rosary and asked a friend to hold me accountable.
Then Monday morning I woke up at 4 a.m. for reasons unknown. Although I wasn't crazy about this, it did allow me to get through my morning routine in time to attend 7 a.m. mass, which I have rarely done because it's tough to do everything on my morning checklist with mass at that time. After mass I briefly carried out my morning devotional before the tabernacle.
Then came Tuesday morning... around 4 a.m. and I found myself wide awake again. Again, not ecstatic, but again an opportunity to make it to mass. And another brief visit to the tabernacle.
That night, I set my alarm to wake me up early... so I could go to mass. And Wednesday morning I made it to morning mass and adoration for the third consecutive time, which I'm pretty sure is a personal record.
Later in the day I requested to start coming to work half an hour later (because they still get 40+ out of me every week, fret not). My boss asked for a reason, and responded "good for you" to my honest reply.
By this point I'd streamlined my morning routine a little. Get up a little earlier, carry out my routine efficiently, and now have time to spend 45 minutes to an hour in adoration before work.
My adoration time is somewhat unstructured. On a given day it may include any of the following: praying Morning Prayer with Invitatory from the Liturgy of the Hours, meditating on the Lord’s Prayer and the Jesus Prayer, praying the rosary, spending time in silence, etc.
This new routine is helping me remember to pause for moments throughout the day to invite the Holy Spirit into my heart and life.
And after several days of this, I find it interesting that although I’m getting less sleep and squeezing more into my daily routine, I feel better in general.