One of the first tasks of King Solomon was the building of the Temple where the ritual sacrifices of the Jewish nation were to take place. For we Catholics, the Church has replaced the Temple as the sacred space where we offer sacrifice and worship to God. The Church is important to our faith as it marks out a ‘space’ that we hold sacred or holy (literally ‘set apart’) for particular purposes. It is the reason why the Church as such may or may not be a suitable place for a concert depending on the type and form the music and singing will take. It is also why malls are not appropriate for the celebration of Mass, as they do not allow for the creation of the sense of a ‘sacred space.’ This is literally impossible with the hustle and bustle of people in the malls in the spaces where the masses are usually celebrated.

Solomon cries out to God that He will hear the prayers that the people are going to offer him, both in petition and sacrifice. It is a cry that continues to this day as people pray and offer thanksgiving, sacrifice and petitions in Churches all around the world. Of course, churches are not the only place where we can pray, however, they do provide a model for determining whether or not a place is suitable or apt for prayer. I recognize that in the busyness of a household quiet and privacy can be difficult to find. That is okay as long as we remember that it is important that we ensure that we do find times when we can have them.

Prayer is the heartbeat of our relationship with God and we should never allow ourselves to be tempted to dispense with it from our lives. It must always hold pride of place in our priorities such that we are willing to make sacrifices in order to ensure that we are praying regularly. I am hesitant to put a time length on prayer simply because each of our situations is different and thus we have to discern what is appropriate to our particular situation in life. Be that as it may, suffice it to say that we pray daily to the extent that we are maintaining a healthy and life giving dialogue with out Lord and Creator.

How well am I creating moments of sacred space in my life in order to pray better?

Holy Spirit, help me to order my life well so that I will be able to pray well and thus maintain a healthy focus on my life of faith. Grant me the grace to make the sacrifices necessary in order to make this happen.