A Real Woman's Guide to Devotions, Part 4 - But I'm so TIRED!

Even the flowers look tired at this time of year

Are you tired? Me too! In fact, I think “tired” might be the single adjective that describes most women. We're always trying to keep a zillion balls in the air, and if you're like me, you never quite feel you succeed.

And sleep? Eight uninterrupted hours seems like a dream! For a couple of decades it was pregnancy and babies who kept me up. These days it's the less exciting trials of middle age that give me insomnia. This summer my Fitbit, caring device it is, became so alarmed at my poor sleep habits that it started sending me emails with suggestions on how to get more rest. Ha – at least it made me laugh!

Chronic tiredness presents an obstacle to a vibrant devotional life. We don't want to be falling asleep as we pray!

But there are things even a very tired woman can do to build regular prayer times into her life. Here are some of my favorite ways of incorporating prayer into daily life:

1. Pray with your children!
Meal times are obvious (and good!) times to pray with your children. But how about as the day starts and before they go to sleep? Also, teach them to pray as you pray with and for them. And when something unusual happens, stop right then and pray together. Do you hear an ambulance siren? Stop and pray together for those in need. Maybe you've just read an email prayer request. Stop and pray for that need, and include your children as appropriate.

2. Pray as you fold laundry!
Laundry folding sessions make a great time to pray for the person whose belongings you are folding. When I had mountains of laundry for little ones, praying over the wash helped me to be thankful instead of resentful about the work, plus it gave me opportunities to intercede for each one.

3. When stressed, just stop and pray where you are.
Not sure how to respond to some parenting situation? Pray! Your child has made you angry? Stop and pray before dealing with the situation! Susanna Wesley, famously the mother of 17 children, would throw her apron over her head to give herself a modicum of privacy when she needed to pray.

4. Find a prayer partner!
A friend or two can be a great help in having some kind of regular prayer. For most of the three+ decades I've been a mom, I've had a pair of friends to pray with. (One pair in SC, another in NC, and yet another in IN.)

- Sometimes it works to get together very early in a morning to pray. This is what I did when I had just a couple of little ones.

- Maybe you can meet with a friend and pray together while your children play. (Yes, you will be interrupted periodically as you tend to your children. That's OK!)

My South Carolina prayer partners and our babies (c. 1985)

- If getting out of the house sounds too complicated, try a regular phone call. Keep it brief and to-the-point. I read of a pair of friends who would call at 8 AM each morning before their children left for school and pray for each other's families for five minutes. No time for fluff, but enough time for some focused prayer.

- You could have an email prayer partner. In addition to sending prayer requests, at least some of the time, you might also write out your prayers for one another. I have a friend who regularly types her prayer responses, and I can't tell you how I have been strengthened by reading her prayers.

And my favorite -
- Walk and pray!
For many, many years now, I've met with a couple of friends to share our lives as we take a walk, and then we pray for one another. Sometimes we're able to swing near weekly meetings. More often, even at this point in our lives, we struggle enough with schedules that it happens something closer to once or twice a month. 

And sometimes we get together for other types of adventures!
Praying friends

Don't let your fatigue keep you from spending time with the Lord. Do what it takes to plan daily times with Him during you day, and then look for a friend or two to become your prayer partner. If you do, I can guarantee you will both be blessed as you encourage one another in godliness!

A Real Woman's Guide to Devotions series - Previous posts

Part 1 - Introduction

Part 2 - But I'm BUSY!

Part 3 - Dealing with Distractions

Martin Luther on Distractions, Prayer, and Barbers


Peter Locke said…

We've been listening to a segment from BBC School Radio each day after lunch while we clean up. This one reminded me of you learning about Hadrian's Wall and wanting to explore it by bike.


Anne said…

Thank you for that link. I wasn't familiar with BBC School Radio, but it looks super. And I love your idea of listening while you clean up after lunch! Maybe I'll try that tomorrow with my guys. :)

(And yes - I still would love to ride bikes along Hadrian's Wall! Maybe one day??)

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