One must not think that a person who is suffering is not praying. He is
offering up his sufferings to God, and many a time he is praying much more
truly than one who goes away by himself and meditates his head off, and, if he
has squeezed out a few tears, thinks that is prayer.
-St. Teresa of Avila
For people like us who live with physical and health challenges, saying prayers using the Church’s indulgenced Sacramentals – like the Rosary Beads – or The Psalter, isn’t always something we can do. It may be a day of excessive pain or a night that passed without sleep that prevents it, however much we desired to. And so, instead or in addition to these more formal methods of Prayer, we offer our very sufferings themselves to God as Prayer. Apparently, this was a Practice known to be acceptable in the Church even back in St. Teresa’s time, as the Quote above shows. But, just what is it that makes our suffering something that can help anyone?
Well, I can’t speak to that as a Theologian might, but in my opinion and from what I have observed, every Conscious Act offered to God for the sake of another’s well-being sends out a vibration of Love into the universe that carries with it an energy of pure spirit Pure Spirit not because of our own purity, but because we have offered it to God, who then shows “acceptance”, if you will, by uniting that small offering of ours to His own Holy Spirit, purifying it of all that is less-than and unworthy of His own perfection. If we make these offerings faithfully, daily, or even several times in the same day, how much Love would our Lord shower down upon us all?!
Now I DID say, “every Conscious Act”. So what is a Conscious Act, then? A Conscious Act is one done with Intention and Attention. So many of our daily actions are done by habit or conditioning. To make a truly Conscious Act, I try to focus however much of my attention my pain allows upon Jesus, knowing that all my desires are known to Him. And then I will that this humble desire may be of use to relieve the sufferings of others, according to God’s Will, believing in Faith that such IS also God’s Will. Lastly, I let go and Trust in God to supply all the rest, so that this simple act may be brought to fruition in Him.