Getting Through the Dog Days of the Spiritual Life

In the South particularly, the weeks from mid-July to mid-August are referred to as the “dog days” of summer season. The science behind the warmth is that Earth’s tilt causes the solar’s rays to hit at a extra direct angle and for an extended time, therefore hotter, longer days. Science apart, I do know that it may well get so sizzling and humid right here that it’s mentioned the climate will not be match even for a canine. The impact of this phenomenon, no less than the place I reside, generally is a bit of psychological and bodily lethargy, stagnation, and simply feeling blah. Despite our having air con, simply understanding how sizzling and humid it’s exterior causes us to really feel a normal disinterest in most issues.

Over the years, I’ve seen that my religious life can have canine days additionally. My prayer can be fruitful, after which it appears to take a nosedive till it turns into a listless block of time. The thought of sitting nonetheless in prayer loses its enchantment to me. That’s after I use my expertise with the summer season warmth to assist get me again on monitor with prayer.

For instance, generally it appears the canine days will final without end, with no afternoon showers to chill issues off or no cool spell in sight. When that occurs, I’ve to remind myself that the warmth will finally change to cooler temperatures. I believe of how good that first day of fall will really feel, after I’ll want a lightweight jacket. Similarly, when prayer is troublesome, I attempt to not panic. I believe again to occasions of comfort, particularly people who occurred throughout earlier prayer. I belief that God, who positioned me in comfort, remains to be with me and can carry me by way of this dry time. It’s a matter of perseverance.

During the summer season, I have to always remind myself to remain hydrated, particularly if I’m outside. It’s the identical for my religious life. When prayer is dry, hydrate! Just as water is essential for offering the physique with fluids, so is prayer essential for offering our inside house with what retains it alive. Prayer retains my inside taking note of God’s presence in and round me. When I’ve issue praying, I don’t quit. I nonetheless pray day-after-day, giving myself a lift of one thing “cool,” resembling religious music or movies throughout my common prayer time. I refresh my prayer by altering my house or methodology of praying.

When it’s an particularly lengthy, sizzling day, I hunker down inside, accommodating my actions to the climate. Being faraway from the warmth takes my focus off the climate, making me suppose extra clearly and boosting my spirits. Adding one thing to my prayer routine helps get me out of the doldrums. I would name somebody and supply to hope with that pal. Or I would go to with somebody with whom I’ve been out of contact. Maybe I’ll put together an additional meal for a homebound pal. Doing one thing variety for others takes the focus off myself and places it on what’s vital: serving to others. Being of service is one of the major methods to snap myself out of the religious blahs.

The canine days of summer season are actual and assured to be round in years to return. (It’s the cause God made chilly watermelon and snow cones!) The identical is true of the canine days of the religious life. But with a bit planning and creativity, we are able to get by way of unscathed. Just bear in mind to persevere, hydrate with prayer, and serve!

Photo by Mel Elías on Unsplash.

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