Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Aleteia
Sunday 13 June |
Saint of the Day: St. Anthony of Padua
home iconSpirituality
line break icon

How to deal with distractions during prayer, according to St. Therese of Lisieux

© Office Central de Lisieux

Philip Kosloski - published on 05/08/18

The "Little Flower" offers her simple advice for those struggling with distractions in the midst of prayer.

For many of us, when we sit down to pray, we are bombarded by constant distractions. It could be anything from the ticking of the clock on the wall, the honking of a horn outside, or even a barrage of thoughts about various people or relationships in our lives.

It can be difficult to focus our attention on God and remain in a conversation with him.

However, sometimes these distractions aren’t “distractions” at all, they are thoughts introduced by God that are aimed at our spiritual benefit.

For example, here is what St. Thérèse of Lisieux wrote about being distracted during prayer.

I also have many [distractions] but as soon as I am aware of them, I pray for those people the thought of whom is diverting my attention, and in this way they reap benefit from my distractions.

Sometimes God wants to divert our attention and shed light on a struggling friend or family member. They may need our prayers or our charity. This way the distraction is turned in the right way and instead of taking us away from God, it brings us closer to him and his divine plan.

The key is to be attentive when that happens and notice when you being thinking about someone in your life, or even something you saw on Facebook. In some instances God may want you to be praying for that individual or extending a helpful hand to them.

St. Josemaria Escriva instructs us that, “The closer an apostle is to God, the more universal his desires. His heart expands and takes in everybody and everything in its longing to lay the universe at the feet of Jesus.”

So the next time you feel distracted during prayer, offer it to God and open your heart to whatever God wants to communicate to you in that moment.


PADRE PIO

Read more:
Padre Pio’s favorite prayer of petition


SAINT FRANCIS DE SALES

Read more:
The first step towards spiritual health, according to St. Francis de Sales

Tags:
PrayerSaints
Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read Aleteia.org every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in seven languages: English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...




Top 10
1
RECONSTRUCTED CHRIST
Lucandrea Massaro
This 3D “carbon copy” of Jesus was created using the ...
2
PADRE PIO
Philip Kosloski
Padre Pio’s favorite prayer of petition
3
SACRED HEART OF JESUS
Philip Kosloski
Miracle prayer to the Sacred Heart of Jesus
4
PRAY
Philip Kosloski
Offer your heart to Jesus with this prayer
5
BIEDNY CZŁOWIEK
Daniel Esparza
Were Jesus and Joseph really carpenters?
6
SPANISH FLU
Bret Thoman, OFS
What Padre Pio saw in the Spanish Flu of 1918
7
RAIN
Kathleen N. Hattrup
3 three-word prayers to turn your day around
See More
Newsletter
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.