Have you heard of preppers before? Preppers typically refer to a group of people who believe that the apocalypse or some other kind of calamity is going to fall upon the earth (think zombies) and they must be prepared for it’s arrival. This includes everything from having bunkers in the back yard, being able to make their own food and clothing, find or create fresh water and stocking up on foodstuffs and weaponry. Say what you want about the legitimacy of their claims, you can’t dispute that if they are correct, they are most definitely prepared.
But this kind of preparation, of collecting and stocking up, does not translate to the kind of preparation we have been talking about the past few days. You can’t spend your whole day (or your one hour at Mass) praying and then expect those prayers to “last” for the week or the month. It’s not as if you can put prayers into some form of bank and then withdraw from it until you need to refill it again.
Think of it this way. You have a friend. You and your friend spend a whole day together doing the things you like to do and having quality conversations about life, your friendship, the past, the future, etc. It’s a great day. But then, you don’t call your friend for a year. You don’t reach out, you don’t post on their Facebook wall, you make no effort at connecting with them. Then, you do decide that all the friendship of that day has run out and you try to connect again with your friend. You might be surprised by what you find. Maybe your friend is engaged to be married, maybe they changed jobs, maybe they had a baby. Who knows, but certainly not you since you were disengaged from their life for a whole year.
Now I know this is a rather extreme version but it makes a point. We can’t expect to have a relationship with God when we only talk with Him a few times a month. We definitely can’t expect to build a habit of prayer if we only pray when we are in distressing times or we want something badly. The type of preparation we do in daily prayer isn’t stockpiling, left on a shelf to get dusty and be pulled down in desperation. It is renewing. Each day that we pray, we renew our relationship with God. We allow God to make it deeper, stronger, more trusting and more life-giving. Together with God we are placing our lives on the sturdy foundation that God has made for us. That way, when hard times do come, we find ourselves standing solidly on layers and layers of trusting prayer experience.
***Did you find the presence of your guardian angel comforting? I know I forget about mine and it is good to be reminded that I always have her in my corner. Please feel free to share your experience, thoughts and offer support to one another in the comments, on Twitter with the #DailyGraces or on the Facebook page.