The Lord measures our perfection not by the number and greatness of the works we do for Him, but by our manner of doing them. And this manner is only the love of God with which, and for which, we do them. They are more perfect as they are done with more pure and perfect love, and as they are less mingled with the thoughts of pleasure or praise in this life or the other (St. John of the Cross).
When St. Bernard was assisting one night at Matins, he saw some angels who were carefully noting down the merit of each of the monks. The merit of those who were praying with much fervor, they set down in golden characters; of those with less fervor, in silver characters; of those with good will, but without affection, in ink; of those with sloth and drowsiness, in water; but as to those who were in mortal sin or voluntarily distracted, they wrote nothing, but, standing motionless, they lamented their blindness.
Here are some of our favorite prayers:
Saying 3 Hail Marys with "Please dear Lady, help me avoid mortal sin this day!"
Prayer to Our Lady of Guadalupe for Unborn Children
Dear Mother Mary, Our Lady of Guadalupe,
I pray to you today for the lives of all unborn children who are in danger of abortion. Please intercede for the parents of these children to be given the grace and courage to bring their babies to birth and to the lives God has planned for them. Amen.
A Prayer to the Holy Spirit
Oh, Holy Spirit, beloved of my soul, I adore you! Enlighten me. Guide me. Strengthen me. Console me. Tell me what I should do. Give me your orders. I promise to submit myself to all that you desire of me and to accept all that you permit to happen to me. Let me only know your will.
Guardian Angel Prayer
O Angel of God, my guardian dear
To whom God's love commits thee here
Ever this day be at my side
To light and guard to rule and guide. Amen
Prayer to St. Therese for Healing
Dearest St. Therese,
You are the Little Flower of Jesus. Pray this day that I may be made well in body, mind and spirit. Help me to always see, as you so clearly did, that my sufferings and trials are meant to cleanse and purify me that I may be more worthy to receive God's unending love. Amen
The Universal Prayer
Lord, I believe in you: INCREASE my faith.
I trust in you: STRENGTHEN my trust.
I love you: LET ME LOVE YOU more and more.
I am sorry for my sins: DEEPEN my sorrow.
I WORSHIP you as my first beginning,
I LONG for you as my last end,
I PRAISE you as my constant helper,
And CALL ON YOU as my loving protector.
GUIDE me by your wisdom,
CORRECT me with your justice,
COMFORT me with your mercy,
PROTECT me with your power.
I OFFER YOU, Lord, MY THOUGHTS to be fixed on you;
MY WORDS to have you for their theme;
MY ACTIONS to reflect my love for you;
MY SUFFERINGS to be endured for your greater glory.
I WANT TO DO what you ask of me:
IN THE WAY you ask,
FOR AS LONG as you ask,
Because YOU ask it.
Lord, ENLIGHTEN my understanding,
STRENGTHEN my will,
PURIFY my heart,
and MAKE ME HOLY.
Help me to REPENT of my past sins
And to RESIST TEMPTATION in the future.
Help me to RISE ABOVE my human weakness as a Christian.
Let me LOVE YOU, my Lord and my God,
And SEE MYSELF as I really am -
A PILGRIM in this world,
A Christian called to respect and love
ALL whose lives I touch,
Those under my authority,
My friends and my enemies.
Help me to CONQUER ANGER with gentleness,
GREED by generosity,
APATHY by fervor.
Help me to FORGET MYSELF
And REACH OUT toward others.
Make me PRUDENT in planning,
COURAGEOUS in taking risks.
Make me PATIENT in suffering,
UNASSUMING in prosperity.
Keep me, Lord, ATTENTIVE at prayer,
TEMPERATE in food and drink,
DILIGENT in my work,
FIRM in my good intentions
Let my CONSCIENCE be clear,
My CONDUCT without fault,
My SPEECH blameless,
My LIFE well-ordered.
PUT ME ON GUARD against my human weaknesses.
Let me CHERISH your love for me,
KEEP your law,
And COME AT LAST to your salvation.
TEACH ME to realize that this world is passing,
That my true future is the HAPPINESS OF HEAVEN,
That LIFE ON EARTH is short,
And the life to come ETERNAL.
Help me to PREPARE for death
With a PROPER FEAR of judgment,
But a GREATER TRUST in your goodness.
LEAD ME SAFELY through death
To the endless joy of heaven.
Grant this through Christ our Lord. Amen.
The Miracle Prayer
Lord Jesus, I come before you, just as I am. I am sorry for my sins, I repent of my sins, please forgive me.
In your name, I forgive all others for what they have done against me. I renounce Satan, the evil spirits, and all their works.
I give you my entire self.
Lord Jesus, now and forever, I invite you into my life, Jesus. I accept you as my Lord and Savior. Heal me, change me, strengthen me in body, soul, and spirit.
Come, Lord Jesus, cover me with your precious blood and fill me with your Holy Spirit. I love you, Jesus. I praise you, Jesus. I thank you, Jesus. I shall follow you every day of my life. Amen.
Prayer of Thomas Merton
My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does, in fact, please you. And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road, though I may know nothing about it. Therefore I will trust you always though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and you will never leave me to face my perils alone.
Consecration to the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, through the Immaculate Heart of Your Loving Mother, I consecrate myself to You. Take possession of my whole being; transform me into Yourself. Make my hands Your hands, my feet your feet, my heart Your heart. Let me see with your eyes, listen with Your ears, speak with Your lips, love with Your heart, understand with Your mind, serve with Your will and be dedicated to You with my whole being. Make me Your other self. Amen.
How great is your name, Lord, through all the earth? How wonderful is your name over all the earth, O Lord, our Lord!
How exalted is your glory above the sky! Out of the mouths of children and infants, you have brought praise, to confound your enemies, to destroy your vengeful foes.
When I see the heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon, and stars, which you set in their place – what is a man, that you should take thought for him? What is the son of man, that you should look after him?
You have made him but one step lower than the angels; you have crowned him with glory and honor; you have set him over the works of your hands.
You have put everything beneath his feet, cattle and sheep and the beasts of the field, the birds in the air and the fish in the sea, whatever passes along the paths of the waters.
How wonderful is your name above all the earth, O Lord, our Lord!
Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.
How great is your name, Lord, through all the earth!
Prayer for Detachment
I beg of you, my Lord, to remove anything which separates me from you, and you from me.
Remove anything that makes me unworthy of your sight, your control, your reprehension; of your speech and conversation, of your benevolence and love.
Cast from me every evil that stands in the way of my seeing you, hearing, tasting, savoring, and touching you; fearing and being mindful of you; knowing, trusting, loving, and possessing you; being conscious of your presence and, as far as may be, enjoying you.
This is what I ask for myself and earnestly desire from you. Amen.