Friday, January 13, 2017

REST FOR THE WEARY! Two helpful prayers.

I haven't tried this yet, but today I came across something I really need:  a prayer to Jesus for rest and sleep.  It's the second prayer for sleep I have found.   I have adrenal fatigue really bad.  Most of the time I feel overwhelmed (a symptom).  It's mostly my own fault.  I do too much and I worry too much.  I take on too many responsibilities and I am always trying to solve problems and fix things instead of letting Jesus fix everything.  Over the last year (2016) many good things happened.  One was that I finally started getting some good, wonderful sleep.  I call it my delicious sleep because it really was that good.   I started praying a prayer called The Care of the Body and Soul prayer.  I got it from Fr. Ripperger (I download and listen to his talks on the spiritual life).  You can say it at the start of your day and at the end of your day.  It is most efficacious to pray it at bedtime so that your guardian angel can direct your dreams.  You can also pray this prayer for your children, friends and family.  Here is this prayer:

Care of the Body and Soul Prayer
 
Into thy hands Mary, I commend my body and my soul.  I ask thee to provide for them and to protect them.  I ask thee to protect them from the evil one.  I ask thee enlighten my mind, strengthen my will, and refrain my appetites by grace.  Our Lady and Saint Michael, call down from Heaven the Holy Legions of Angels under your command to protect me:  I ask of thee all the things I ask of my Guardian Angel.    My Guardian Angel, under thy intellectual and volitional protection I place my body.  I ask thee to illumine my mind and refrain my appetites.  I ask thee to strengthen my cognitive power, my memory and my imagination.  Help me to remember the things that I should and not to remember the things I should not. Help me to associate the things that I should and not to associate the things that I should not.  Give me good, clear images in my imagination.  I ask thee to drive away all demons that might affect me while I sleep (or throughout the course of this day).  (Help me to sleep and, if thou should deem it prudent, direct my dreams.  Help me to arise refreshed. ) Amen.
 
 
Last year I shared this prayer with a friend.  I think she has been praying this prayer and the other day she told me that over the last several weeks she has been dreaming of being at mass.  She said it is a wonderful dream and she feels the presence of God at mass in her dreams. 
 
Getting back to my own delicious, restful sleep, I made a new friend last summer.   We'll call her Betsy for the sake of her privacy and this post.  From the very first day of making her acquaintance I stopped sleeping.  I got insomnia.  Where did my wonderful, delicious sleep go?  I found that when I did sleep it was only for an hour or two.  I felt constantly agitated.  I became weary, depressed and distressed.  I knew something wasn't right.  Betsy seemed like someone who was sincerely trying to get her life in order, but there were so many things about the friendship that just weren't right.  I was seeing a lot of red flags.  Finally  I discussed my friendship with Betsy with my spiritual director.  "End the friendship now!" he exclaimed.  And so I did.  I did it as gently as I could.  That day I started to sleep again, but I have been so sleep deprived that I am more exhausted than ever.   I am waiting for that wonderful, delicious sleep to come again.  I am so tired that I am making dumb mistakes.  I am so weary. 
 
Soon after I ended my friendship with Betsy,  we discovered that we had been robbed.  It wasn't big or expensive stuff.  It was small, petty things like a piece of jewelry and a couple of wine glasses and some Korean pocket change.  We knew right away who had done it.  Betsy and her boyfriend.  One day Betsy and her boyfriend came over to help me do some work on our house.  When they arrived they both said that they needed to use the restroom.  Our downstairs bathroom was at the time being used for storage and so they asked if they could use our master bathroom.  I felt hesitant but let them. They went one at a time.  I noticed they each took a long time up there in the bathroom.  Later on that day, Betsy boasted to me, "I know what's in your cabinets and drawers! I dug through them! Ha! Ha!" she laughed.  "There are two things I don't do, though.  I don't lie and I don't steal."  Well, I knew she did both.  I had seen her do questionable things when we were together shopping.  Over the next couple of weeks I realized that she had indeed gone through our things.  We found jewelry boxes torn apart and stashed elsewhere and other boxes torn open and the contents hidden behind things in closets.   So we contacted the police and spent the next two months fortifying our home and removing everything of value and trying to find out what was missing.  If I was tired before, I was exhausted now more than ever.
 
Then another thing happened.  Thanksgiving morning around 4 a.m. I was awakened by the sound of a key being put into our front door.  I got up and listened.  Someone was trying to get inside our house!  I prayed to Saint Michael and then I heard faint footsteps and then nothing.  We have of course changed the locks, but I have become hyper vigilant.  I awake at the slightest sound!  My sleep is so disturbed.  I have been pleading with God to help me find rest. 
 
God has heard my prayer!  This morning I picked up the two volume set of books called, The Life and Revelations of St. Gertrude:  Virgin and Abbess of the Order of Benedict.  I opened volume one.   I opened it randomly and started reading on page 236.  Here, St. Gertrude is sick and can't listen to the sermon at mass and so Jesus tells her to lay her head on His heart and he gives her His own sermon.   I love this.  I imagined myself resting my own head on Jesus' heart.  I imagine feeling loved by Him.  I feel His peace. 
 On page 237 I found a prayer that Jesus gives St. Gertrude to help her sleep.  Here is that prayer:
 
 
Jesus' Prayer for Sleep
 
"I beseech Thee Most Merciful God, by the most tranquil sweetness with which Thou hast reposed from all eternity in the bosom of the Father, by Thy peaceful abode of nine months in the womb of a virgin, and by all the holy delights which Thou hast ever enjoyed in souls filled with Thy love, to grant me some rest, --not for my own satisfaction, but for Thy eternal glory,--in order that the strength of my wearied body may be restored, and that I may be able to fulfill my duties."
 
 
And that's really all I can ask for:  to be able to fulfill my duties! 
 
I was so excited to find this second prayer for a good night's sleep that I thought I would share it with you. 

Regarding the burglary of our home:  the police have been really great and they have kept in touch with us.  Over the last several months there has been a huge increase in theft and larceny in the area and the police believe that "Betsy and her Boyfriend" are somehow involved.  Severing ties with Betsy has restored much of the peace that we had been enjoying.   My hope for them is that they will be caught so that they can really begin making changes in their lives.