There was a time when I used to come home in the morning after dropping the kids off at school, make half a pot of coffee, and leisurely pray a rosary before I went about my daily chores and activities.
I was fairly new at this discipline of praying daily, and I needed time, and I definitely needed plenty of cheat sheets. I ended up with a lovely little book that had the scriptural rosary. That helped me a lot because I was able to follow along with the story. It was just what I needed to help me remember the mysteries, and I was hooked on the prayer.
As it happens, other things changed. I lost the little booklet, but not the habit of praying. I was already in love with the prayer…and falling deeper in love with the story. Slowly, and steadily, my faith was blossoming … one bead at a time.
Years later, I see Mary’s gentle hand in this journey as she has led me to her Son. That little book with the scriptural rosary came back to me, a sweet little gift that keeps giving as I revisit the pages I almost knew by heart.
But times have changed. I’ve gone back to a demanding career, and I don’t have the luxury of running a pot of coffee in the middle of my morning. Heck, I don’t have time to run to the vending machine to buy a terrible impersonation of coffee.
I do, however, attempt to finish a rosary. That challenge has proven to be more difficult that I imagined, mostly because I’m constantly interrupted and I’d forget where I was. And then I came upon this plan…if I couldn’t get 20 minutes of uninterrupted time, perhaps I could make the time for a reverent Hail Mary.
One Hail Mary prayed right is certainly worth more than a distracted and mumbled rosary, so I developed a plan. All I needed was a tally system to help me keep track of my progress through the rosary…so I designed this cheat sheet — just a series of bubbles and boxes I could check as I moved through the prayer. One glance told me where I had left off before racing to class or a meeting.
I was sure I’d never be able to get through a whole rosary this way. The thing is, on those days when I can’t escape for a quiet lunch with prayer, I not only find myself praying all day, one Hail Mary at a time, but I find that I have just enough moments throughout the day to finish.
How about that?