Wearable fitness trackers measure heart rate, number of steps, sleep patterns and the variety and intensity of exercise. These are popular and the information can be useful in helping build new healthy habits.
While this tool can make a difference in how much we exercise, and our approach to exercise, I like to take a break from technology when I’m exercising.
In fact, I thrive on fitness freedom, and maybe you do too.
Moving, lifting, and stretching is a sensory experience for me and a much-needed break from the phone, computer, iPad and television. I like the challenge of listening to my body and responding appropriately with varied movements and intensity without technology.
I like freedom in my prayer life as well.
There are plenty of books available about how to pray, methods to use to grow closer to God, and at certain points in our lives, those resources can be helpful, if not critical. But we know from Scripture, and wisdom of the saints, that methods of prayer are secondary to simply giving time to the Lord in prayer to grow in a loving friendship with him.
Mental prayer in my opinion is nothing else than an intimate sharing between friends; it means taking time frequently to be alone with Him who we know loves us. The important thing is not to think much but to love much and so do that which best stirs you to love. Love is not great delight but desire to please God in everything. ~St. Theresa of Avila
How we feel called to pray can vary and the freedom to pray any way we’d like, anytime and anywhere, is a beautiful gift that reminds me just how personally God works with us.
While I’m not a fan of fitness trackers, I think it would be interesting to track how many times a day we think about God, pray, read holy books, mediate on Scripture, pray the Rosary, offer an action or sacrifice to God, make a change in behavior due to a prompting from the Holy Spirit, fast, or give alms.
We are called to pray unceasingly, and even our desire to pray pleases God, so it would be interesting to see just how much time we spend with God daily compared to the other activities in our lives. Unlike fitness tracking, this type of information could be life-changing! So let's make prayer a priority in our daily lives.
Prayer is an act of love; words are not needed. Even if sickness distracts from thoughts, all that is needed is the will to love. ~St. Theresa of Avila