After writing the entry below, I realized that a sentence spawned another grouping of thoughts. It has to do with my prayer life.
My prayer life as a young girl was earnest. Attending Catholic schools will do at least one thing and that is instill in the young mind that prayer is necessary. There are Catholic prayers for almost anything and a patron saint usually assigned for almost every human frailty imaginable. However, after years of indoctrination, the truth of these prayers had lost their freshness, their life. They seemed dead to me, which was the beginning of my search for something more.
When I started to attend a Presbyterian Church, I remember hungering for books on developing a strong prayer life. A.W. Tozer, C.S. Lewis, and Jerry Bridges were just a few who immediately whetted my appetite. The more I studied God's Word, the more I hungered for communion with Him. I started to learn about different types of prayers: praise and thanksgiving, petition, intercession, confession, and forgiveness. I pursued all of them with the passion of a hunter searching for his prey. I was doggedly determined to unearth any truths I felt I had missed during my years in the Catholic Church.
I have prayed with pastors for evangelization efforts, couples for their marriages, young people for spiritual direction. I have interceded numerous times and led many intercessory prayer sessions. I participated in countless others. But after all those years of prayer, my prayer life eventually dwindled to almost non-existence after my last ministerial position. I can honestly confess that there were hard feelings I had to deal with. After 18 years of serving the Lord within the ministry, at the end of 2000, I was done. I tried to keep going, but found I couldn't. If the writer of Hebrews was exhorting us to run the race with perseverance, then I had simply collapsed on the track. I'm sure some wonderful saints carried me out on a stretcher.
I married in 2001. Although I had tried to restart my prayer life with a variety of tools, nothing seemed to click. The engine just wouldn't turn. I finally gave up and would send up prayers occasionally, begging God to please ignite my heart once again.
So I say all that to say this: it's taken seven years for my heart to be touched again by the flame of God. The light is small, but it has been lit. And I'm just as surprised as anyone that it began with praying the Rosary.