If you are struggling to know how to pray, start with this method recommended by St. Francis de Sales.
Sometimes we may not know where to begin when trying to establish a routine of Christian prayer and meditation. There are countless prayer books and manuals, but very few explain the very essence of a Christian prayer life.
Our main goal should always be to increase our relationship with Jesus Christ, using whatever means will help bring that about. The number of prayers is not important as the intimate quality of them.
One simple and easy method of Christian meditation is recommended by St. Francis de Sales in his Introduction to the Devout Life. He wrote this book specifically for the lay members of the faithful and wanted to make prayer more accessible.
He explains that every session of prayer should begin by placing ourselves in the presence of God.
We do not see our God, and although faith warns us that He is present, not beholding Him with our mortal eyes, we are too apt to forget Him, and act as though He were afar: for, while knowing perfectly that He is everywhere, if we do not think about it, it is much as though we knew it not. And therefore, before beginning to pray, it is needful always to rouse the soul to a stedfast remembrance and thought of the Presence of God.
One way to do this is to use our imagination to see God next to us in the room we are praying.
Simply to exercise your ordinary imagination, picturing the Savior to yourself in His Sacred Humanity as if He were beside you just as we are wont to think of our friends, and fancy that we see or hear them at our side.
This can be done by closing our eyes and picturing the room we are in and seeing Jesus in front of us, or maybe sitting on the chair beside us.
There you have it! That is the simplest and easiest way to enter into Christian meditation. It can be done for a few minutes, or you could spend an entire half-hour picturing Jesus at your side.
This simple exercise can have a profound effect on our soul and give us comfort and peace we never thought possible.
Try it now!
Put yourself in the presence of God with this prayer
Experience God’s presence in your soul with this prayer of recollection