A five minute morning ritual that’ll help you live a more joyous life by Martina Casey

A few years ago I heard Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Archbishop of New York, talk about prayer. He shared a small prayer discipline that he does every morning, and that I’ve implemented since I heard that speech; pray before your feet hit the ground. You know those few moments between when you open your eyes and get out of bed? That brief period will set the tone for the rest of your day. 

Let’s take a look at two simple ways you can implement this routine in less than five minutes a day:

1. Ask the Holy Spirit for help. In Romans 8:26-27, St. Paul tells us that “we do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us,” St. Paul says this is done “because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.” 

The Catechism of the Catholic Church (“CCC”) confirms this truth: “The Holy Spirit, whose anointing permeates our whole being, is the interior Master of Christian prayer” (CCC 2672). Ask the Holy Spirit to help you to remember to pray, and then ask Him to help you how to pray. And let it be the first thing you do after you wake up. Start simply with “come Holy Spirit, come.” 

2. Be authentic. Remember that you are not talking to some obscure being somewhere out there. Your relationship with Jesus is an intimate relationship between friends, between lovers, between Father and child. This kind of relationship demands authenticity. The Lord knows your heart already. There’s nothing that you could say that His inscrutable Being doesn’t already know about you. 

In a previous post I mentioned the honesty of Elijah’s cry to God in 1 Kings 19:4. Elijah tells the Lord to take his life as he says: “I have had enough Lord.” Elijah’s crisis is a result of being persecuted by Queen Jezebel who wants him dead. 

Like Elijah we are pursued by many things. We get tired. We doubt. We worry. We are afraid. We sin. And also like Elijah we should cry out to the Lord with vulnerability and honesty trusting that the Holy Spirit is interceding for us. 

On a personal note, there have been many mornings where after multiple night-feedings, diaper changes and snuggles all I can mutter is “come, Holy Spirit, come. Lord, I’m so tired.” And then I’m reminded of what the Lord told St. Paul in 2 Corinthians 12:9: “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” And with that I start my day. 

Give it a try and tell us how you pray in the comments section below or find us on social media; Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, until then let us pray: 

Come Holy Spirit, come, fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in them the fire of your love. Send forth your Spirit and they shall be created. And You shall renew the face of the earth. 


  1. Gabriela

    Martina – I love this post. It really is all about turning your heart to the Lord. Just acknowledging him. I remember how relieved I was when, while I did the Marian Consecration 30 Days to Morning Glory, it was explained that Our Lord and Our Lady know our hearts better than we do, so we just need to turn to them. I’ve also been reading a beautiful little book “How to Pray at All Times” by St. Alphonsus De Liguori here’s a quote I found pertinent:

    “Never, then, forget His sweet presence, as do the greater part of men. Speak to Him as often as you can, for He does not grow weary of this nor disdain it, as do the lords of the earth. If you love Him, you will not be at a loss what to say to Him. Tell Him all that occurs to you about yourself and your affairs, as you would tell it to a dear friend. Do not look at Him as a haughty monarch who will converse only with the great and only on great matters. He, your God, is pleased to lower himself to you, and to hear you communicate to Him your smallest and most ordinary concerns. He loves you as much –He has as much care for you– as if He had no one else to think of but you.”

    1. Allison Dreher

      Thank you for sharing Gabriela. Amen. – Martina

  2. Before I was married and had children, I had lots of time to pray. I had only myself to take care of. At that time, our parish priest constantly reminded the congregation in his homilies to take 15 minutes to pray each day. At that time, I was shocked that it was so difficult for others to find the time to pray, and to pray for so short a time. Now that I am married and have children, I understand. It really is hard to find time to pray and, I admit, also hard to discipline myself to make time to pray. The words of my parish priest from long ago are now a constant reminder and encouragement to me to get up and pray. The best time for me is before I start my day–before I check my email or eat breakfast–when everyone else is still sleeping. What I once thought was so short–just 15 minutes–has truly become a life-breath for me. When I commit myself to this practice, I become a better me and a better mom.

    1. Allison Dreher

      Kelly, yes, I can relate. Becoming a mom changed my prayer life too. I find it so hard to discipline myself to get up earlier, especially after those nights of broken sleep, but when I do it makes all the difference in how I parent. – Martina

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