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I have a problem. I LOVE the Divine Mercy Chaplet and all of the beautiful and incredible blessings that it offers. BUT (and this is a huge BUT), I have an enormously difficult time praying and focusing on it. I am not diagnosed with ADHD (although several family members fervently maintain that I have it), but I do have, at the very least, some of its tendencies. Add to these a full life of constant balancing and I guess that it is not difficult to see why true focus seems almost impossible.
I had begun to feel real frustration with getting through the Chaplet. It completely amazed me that I could start it with a full heart, focused and ready to go, and then suddenly realize that I am at the end, having little memory of focusing on His mercy, but plenty of memory of the dozens of places my thoughts had run off to.
I actually began to consider that this beautiful prayer just wasn't for me. What good was praying it if I was unable to make it true quality time with my Lord?
However, despite these thoughts, I couldn't shake the feeling that God still wanted me to continue trying. So, since nothing is impossible for Him, I asked for help, since it had become painfully clear that I was completely unable to do it on my own.
And, answer He did! One day, on my way to a preparation meeting with a core team before a retreat, I tried praying the Chaplet in the car. Again perplexed at my inability to concentrate, I prayed an exasperated prayer of help. Suddenly, distinct thoughts of each of the talks that were to be given for the retreat came to mind, and He gave me the idea to focus each decade on a particular one. I was absolutely amazed at how much easier it was to focus on each talk as I concentrated on praying for the speaker and those attending the retreat who would be receiving his/her message, all in the light of God's mercy!
Truly in awe of the difference, I have gone on to focus on His mercy in regards to other things and people in my life as well. Then, today I felt called to change it up even more. I began on the first bead to pray for someone I knew that was struggling. My mind immediately went to others involved in his struggle (a person suffering from cancer), and my mind prayed for mercy for each of them, moving on to a new bead each time. This was truly an inspiring and incredible gift from God. Amazingly, as I continued, more people kept popping into my head, some related to previous ones, and some not. By the time I was done I had sincerely prayed for God's mercy to be poured out upon 50 people!! How incredibly amazing is that??
The experience meant so much to me that I felt that I just had to share it!! I will admit sheepishly that there are probably many of you who already pray the Chaplet using these approaches and many other ones as well. However, I really feel I would be remiss if I didn't express my joy in finding a way to pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet more effectively despite the challenge of attention deficiency - a challenge that so many people deal with daily.
I also praise the Lord Who showed me how to spend my time with Him in a way that not only brings me more intimately closer to Him, but also allows me to share in a deeper connection with the Body of Christ.
I do pray that this post is able to provide someone the hope of a similar intimacy and connection to what I have experienced by inspiring new approaches to this beautiful gift of prayer from Our Lord.
May your day be TRULY blessed with continued Easter joy!!
Photo Attribution: https://pixabay.com/en/heart-love-rays-hands-blue-669380/
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