A Lot of Time in the Bathroom

The strange title is sound advice from Phyllis Tickle, the author of The Divine Hours as she responds to some Q & A. The question that evoked this response was: “In a typical day, how do you use The Divine Hours or equivalent at this stage in your life and how did your daily practice of prayer work when you were in the labor-intensive, kids-at-home stage of life?”

The strange title is sound advice from Phyllis Tickle, the author of The Divine Hours as she responds to some Q & A. The question that evoked this response was:

“In a typical day, how do you use The Divine Hours or equivalent at this stage in your life and how did your daily practice of prayer work when you were in the labor-intensive, kids-at-home stage of life?”

Tickle responds that she and her husband raised seven children. Spending a lot of time in the bathroom to pray was essential to developing a divine rhythm among the demanding needs of young children. What I find interesting is that Tickle also says that her children have become so accustomed to her Benedictine schedule that they hardly notice.

This is encouraging to me. I’ve found that my spiritual life has become segmented once again. With four children, I find myself needing to get out of the house to pursue a rule of life. That means, when I can’t get away, my rule of life crumbles rather than sustains me. But Tickle’s words challenge me to develop a rule of life in the midst of the often chaotic and distracting activity of my family’s life. And if her experience is normal, it seems my rhythm will not only become natural for me, but also for my children.

You can pray The Divine Hours online here or here.

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