4 ways to make prayer ımpact your work
What is the cause of stress in our jobs? For me, as I think back over my work life, it was things like conflicts with co-workers, unreasonable deadlines, fear of being laid off, or just plain dislike for what I was doing. On the surface, all of these appear to be fairly unique situations. One common element, however, was the feeling I wasn’t in control. It seemed the harder I tried to control these situations, the more stressful they became. Then, one morning before I left for work, I flipped the page on my daily inspirational calendar and a simple phrase hit me like a brick: “Our goal is not to try harder, but to trust more.”
It occurred to me that much of the stress in my daily work life was caused by my own arrogant attempt to control rather than inviting God in to guide me. Now, when I am worried, I say a quick prayer asking God to help me do what’s right for everyone concerned. Generally, I try to be conscious of the guidance of the Holy Spirit in whatever I do. In those rare instances when I am truly able to trust this guidance, all the pieces seem to fall into place when necessary. This awareness of the Holy Spirit working in my life is also a form of prayer because it draws me closer to God and His mission for me.
4 ways to make prayer impact your work:
1 On your drive into work in the morning, turn your radio off and just spend some time in God’s presence.
2 When you become irritated with a co-worker, ask God for the help to joyfully serve this person.
3 At a break or lunch, take some time to sit quietly or go for a walk to re-center yourself.
4 Keep a favorite prayer easily visible on your computer or desk, or in your toolbox or planner.
Our goal is for prayer to become as natural to us as breathing. The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches us that there are three major expressions of prayer: vocal, meditation, and contemplative (2697-2724). Probably the most common expression is vocal; this is when we pray with words either verbally or mentally (examples 2 and 4 above). Meditation is a spiritual journey and probably the most difficult to practice at work because it requires considerable mental focus. Contemplative prayer is simply taking the opportunity to be in God’s presence experiencing His love (examples 1 and 3 above). Ultimately, our ability to pray in a variety of situations enables us to seek out greater fulfillment and peace in our work life.