One of the many blessings that come from having such a great, loving Father in God is the assurance that we can petition God through prayer at any time. God wants to be invited in to help us whenever possible! God doesn't want us to struggle or feel alone; God loves us.
Matthew 7:7-8 tells us how giving God truly is:
"Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives; and the one who seeks, finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened."
The key to all of this lies in your decision to seek it out. Your teacher cannot help you if you don't ask for help. Your parent won't know what is bothering you unless you share it with them. In a very similar way, God is not able to help us unless we invite and ask for help. Boldly ask, confident in God's follow-through. If we knock, the door will open.
Years ago, I learned that there are four different types of prayer: petition, contrition, thanksgiving, and adoration. 1 Timothy echos that, encouraging that everyone offer prayers of supplications, prayers, petitions, and thanksgiving (1 Timothy 2:5). We are called and encouraged to worship God fully, using all four types of prayer to connect with God's Love and Grace. Over the next four weeks, we're going to be digging into each of them and consider how we can incorporate each into our daily prayer routine. I would guess that we all use petition and thanksgiving regularly and contrition occasionally. In my personal experience, adoration is the one I tend to neglect (and I think that's pretty common).
Adoration is prayer that praises God. As Catholics, adoration is likely to be associated with the exposition of the Blessed Sacrament. This is when Jesus is present among us in the most Holy Sacrament of the Altar is exposed and we can come spend time with Him, face-to-face. Some of us are fortunate enough to be able to spend time Jesus each week, quietly basking in His presence. Others though, are not able to. So how can they participate in prayers of adoration?
At its heart, adoration is what it means to be be still and know that God is with us (Psalm 46:10). It is what Mary did when she sat and watched after her Son's birth and held it in her heart (Luke 2:19). Mary provides with an excellent model, as she always does, on how to walk closely with her Son. Sometimes, we just need to observe Jesus in His greatness and keep His grace and glory in our hearts. Ultimately, when we take time to adore God, we are practicing a level intentional being. Just being with and around God; noticing God's ever-present grace in our lives. You can do this in many different ways but the goal is the same, quiet contemplation in and with God.
How can you adore God today? What can you do as you pray that creates space for God?