Back in high school and university, I had a regular prayer routine and Bible reading time. Then I got married and started having kids… and with each baby added to the family, my prayer time seemed to shrink. I’d tell myself that I needed to pick up my Bible more and I needed to pray more, but then I’d turn around and see the dirty dishes or the clean unfolded laundry or one of the kids would shriek at their siblings and any thoughts of prayer would go out of my head. My irregular confession always started with, “I haven’t spent time with God lately…” It was a broken record that I didn’t know how to change.
Then Carrie Soukup reached out to me on Facebook about her new e-course, Framing Your Life in Prayer. It looked like just what I needed—weekly tips and encouragement to jump start my prayer life. If you’re also a busy mom trying to figure out how to reconnect with God, here’s how Framing Your Life in Prayer has changed my life.
Framing Your Life in Prayer e-Course
Connecting to God is not just for super holy people but every living breathing person on the face of this earth. And an integrated life of prayer is the path that helps you flourish! A lot of people want to be more connected to God. They want to pray more or more deeply but they feel busy or blank. And so… I’ve launched a course to help people find their footing. It is a course on prayer. Personal prayer. On an ordinary, crazy life of deep, Catholic, integrated prayer. ~ Carrie Soukup
Framing Your Life in Prayer is a 5-week e-course delivered every month or so. Each week, you’ll receive an email with a link to a 20-minute (or so) video from Carrie, explaining that week’s practice of prayer and how you can implement it in your life. In the videos, Carrie shares her own story and struggles, explains one type of prayer that you can implement right away (even as a busy mom!), and provides encouragement to pray from Scripture and the saints.
Carrie also provides a printable for each video so you can take notes and reflect on what was presented during the video. If you’re doing this course with some friends or in a church group, then these printables would help start a group discussion. If you’re working through the course on your own (as I did), then you can use the questions as journaling prompts.
Over 5 weeks, you’ll learn about:
- the morning offering
- the practice of the presence of God
- the examen
How This Course Changed My Prayer Life
I’ve heard about each of the prayer practices that Carrie mentions in her video. Chances are that you’ve also heard about the examen or sacrifice or meditation. My problem was that I knew about these in a general sense, but not how to apply them to my own life. Carrie’s video helped me grasp each practice and see how it could fit into my own life. She also provided concrete tips, like examples of a morning offering to pray and concrete reminders to help me actually stop and pray.
I also appreciated that Carrie is a busy mom like me, so she talks about how to fit these practices into our already busy lives. In fact, in the video on sacrifice, she didn’t recommend doing more. She simply showed me ways that I am already making sacrifices and should be offering them to God when I do. As moms, our lives are a continual sacrifice… drinking cold coffee, eating the kids’ leftover sandwiches, reading them yet another story instead of picking up that novel I really want to read… and so instead of grumbling over those or just patting ourselves on the backs for being good moms, we can offer those moments up to God and do them for love of Him (and our kids).
Having the videos delivered over 5 weeks also helped me to build some consistency to my prayer routine. In the first week, it was easy to add the morning offering to my routine. This is a brief prayer that gets my day started on a good foot. In the second week, now that I’m offering my day to God on a regular basis, Carrie encouraged me to see God’s presence throughout my day. (I’m still working on this—I do better with concrete things like specific prayers and prayer times, as I’m easily distracted!)
Habits, as we all know, take time to get established. Too often, I’ve wanted to start a new habit of reading my Bible or praying, but it’s lasted a day or two and then I’ve forgotten about it. Carrie’s weekly emails helped me to stay on track. Her mid-week audio encouragement was also a little reminder to keep it up. Slowly, over the five weeks of the course, I’ve built each of these practices into my life in a regular way, with Carrie’s gentle encouragement and nudging keeping me going.
Frame YOUR Life in Prayer!
If you’d like to frame your life in prayer, or find your footing in a regular prayer life, then I encourage you to take Carrie’s course. Carrie is real and personable in her videos, making each one feel like a chat with a mentor (grab a cup of coffee before you turn it on!). You can sign up for the next session of Framing Your Life in Prayer on Carrie’s blog. Or just drop by to check out Carrie’s intro video and see if what she says resonates with you.
In the morning, O Lord, hear my voice! In the morning I lay my needs in front of you, and I wait. ~ Psalm 5:3
More about Carrie Soukup
Carrie Soukup is a Catholic mom of four, a happy wife, chocolate fanatic and cross-country traveler. She’s been to all but one of the states in the USA. Knee-boards, trampolines and little birds are a few of her favorite things. She’s learning classical guitar and (like me) she often sets off the fire alarm with her cooking. (Hey, it’s not me—it’s my oven. It doesn’t like pizza. Or casseroles.)
Carrie blogs regularly at GraceFinders about prayer, finding God in everyday life and raising kids in the Catholic Christian faith. She’s the author of Collection of Grace: A Flexible Handbook For Growing a Life of Prayer and Growing a Life of Prayer – a Workbook Journal. She’s also a regular contributor to CatholicMom.com. Although she’s a run of the mill Catholic, she’s been greatly influenced by the Jesuits, Carmelites, Dominicans, evangelical Christians, FOCUS and Opus Dei.
For better or for worse, she’s worked as an exterior house painter, university chaplain, curriculum writer, high school teacher and laundry girl at a fitness center. On a good day, you can find her hiking or on stage as a storyteller. Framing Your Life in Prayer is her first e-course.
You can also find Carrie as GraceFinders on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
How do you cultivate a rich prayer life as a busy mom?
Sounds like one to put on the list. Thanks.