Jump directly to the Content

Finding Myself in Fixed-Hour Prayer

How praying the Daily Offices is uniting a church in the Spirit.

I stumbled on fixed-hour prayer about eight years ago. After my father passed away, I found my energy levels really low, and I couldn't sustain my usual devotional life. I did all the regular things: the ACTS acrostic and extemporaneous prayer. I replicated prayer meetings on a one-on-one basis. But nothing seemed to work. I had heard a priest talk about the Daily Office, so, even though it sounded like cheating to me, I thought I would try reading other people's prayers.

I couldn't find that particular prayer book, but I came across The Divine Hours by Phyllis Tickle. Her adaptation of the Benedictine prayer format included readings every three hours of the day, plus one for bedtime. I started with once a day, then twice, and soon I was up to four times a day. Fixed-hour prayer transformed my prayer life.

Until that time, I had not preached often on daily prayer, because I didn't want to preach something that I wasn't doing myself. Our contemporary models for prayer were somehow superhuman: ...

Support Our Work

Subscribe to CT for less than $4.25/month

Homepage Subscription Panel

Read These Next

A Plea for Pray-ers
A Plea for Pray-ers
There's something lacking in our public petitions to God.
From the Magazine
Our Worship Is Turning Praise into Secular Profit
Our Worship Is Turning Praise into Secular Profit
With corporate consolidation in worship music, more entities are invested in the songs sung on Sunday mornings. How will their financial incentives shape the church?
Editor's Pick
Come Ye Pastors, Heavy Laden
Come Ye Pastors, Heavy Laden
Learning to walk under the weight of ministry's many hats.