THE 'WARRIOR'S DAILY RULE'
DISCIPLINES TO PREPARE
FOR SPIRITUAL BATTLE
"Great things are not done by impulse, but by a series of small things brought together. And great things are not accidental, but must certainly be willed."
- Vincent Van Gogh
WHAT ARE THE REQUIREMENTS OF THE 'WARRIOR'S DAILY RULE'?
AD MAJOREM DEI GLORIAM!
"Prayer & sacrifice are like the two wings of a bird,
and no dumb bird ever tried to fly with one wing!"
- Fr. Gus Donegan, TOR
1) STEADFAST PRAYER
1) CONSECRATE - Upon rising in the morning, say the 'Warrior's Creed' to consecrate your day to Jesus through the intercession of St. Michael:
I, A WARRIOR OF ST. MICHAEL, PLEDGE MYSELF FOR LIFE TO THE SERVICE OF CHRIST THE KING & THE ADVANCEMENT OF HIS KINGDOM AS A FAITHFUL SOLDIER IN THE ARMY OF LIGHT. I AM COURAGEOUS, HUMBLE, JOYFUL, & MAGNANIMOUS.
I ALWAYS DO MY BEST & NEVER QUIT; I GO ABOVE & BEYOND TO PUT OTHERS BEFORE MYSELF; & I EXECUTE MY DUTIES WITH PASSION, HONOR, INTEGRITY, & EXCELLENCE. ST. MICHAEL, MAKE ME A WARRIOR! PLACE UPON ME THE FULL ARMOR OF GOD. GIVE ME YOUR STRENGTH TO DEFEAT MY FEARS, AND RISE UP TO ANY CHALLENGE. HELP ME, THROUGH THE POWER OF JESUS, & THE INTERCESSION OF MARY, JOSEPH, & ALL THE ANGELS & SAINTS, TO CRUSH THE HEAD OF THE EVIL ONE IN MY LIFE. SERVIAM. I WILL SERVE."
2) PRAY - Worship the Lord. Contemplate the mysteries of the faith. Examine your conscience. Repent of your sins. Intercede for your wife & children, for your brother warriors, for your pastor, & for your parish. End with the 'Prayer to St. Michael the Archangel'.
NOTE: You are encouraged to ask the Lord how he wants you to structure your prayer time, & customize it based on your discernment. It may be a few minutes a day or an hour a day, which may vary based on your vocation & state in life. Feel free to add a rosary, divine mercy chaplet, or other devotion as the Lord leads. If your schedule allows you to attend daily Mass and/or do your prayer time in front of the Eucharist, even better! It’s also helpful to set aside a dedicated place in your home for prayer to have a crucifix & other sacramentals that help draw your mind & heart toward God.
3) STUDY - Read the Bible daily with an emphasis on the gospels (lectio divina is highly recommended). If time allows, read the Catechism of the Catholic Church, the writings of the Saints, Church Fathers, and/or other spiritual writings as the Lord leads.
4) LISTEN - Ask God, "What do you want to say to me today to help me fight my battle?" Listen to how God may move your mind, heart, emotions, or physical sensations to communicate his love & his plan for you today.
2) COURAGEOUS SACRIFICE
1) DISCERN - Discern & commit to some form of daily sacrifice during this season of your life. It could be specifically for you, or your Warrior Squad men's group could choose to all do the same sacrifice for additional accountability & solidarity. Some common examples of daily sacrifices include getting up earlier for extra prayer time; doing an extra act of service for your wife, children, friends, co-workers, etc; fasting (from food, sugar, TV, social media, complaining, etc); being more generous with your time, talent, & treasure; doing an additional service or ministry; doing a daily cardio or strength training workout; or any other form of physical sacrifice as the Lord leads. If you work out, try involving your neighbors, fellow brother warriors, or your children to foster a sense of community. Remember, faith in Jesus is CAUGHT more than TAUGHT! Some groups may even incorporate a workout element in their monthly Squad meeting.
2) UNITE - Whatever you choose, unite your sacrifices to Christ's. Remember that self-denial & mortification are not ends in themselves or ways of proving our own strength or will power. Rather, our daily sacrifices are an intentional way of putting the needs of the spirit above the needs of the body, which helps to ensure that Christ the King remains on the throne of our hearts. Small daily sacrifices are also practice in discipline & self-mastery regarding morally neutral subject matter, so that when we do encounter temptations to sin, we already have second nature ‘muscle memory’ in denying the desires of our flesh. Lastly, you can use that small sacrifice as a participation in & meditation on the sacrifice of Jesus for you on the cross. When you unite your sufferings to Jesus, you can offer your sacrifice up as a prayer for your intentions! This is what the Church refers to as ‘redemptive suffering’.
3) JOYFUL CELEBRATION
1) FEAST - Take extra time to pray, rest, and feast on Sundays, feast days, & solemnities (especially 3/19 Feast of St. Joseph, 8/2 Feast of Our Lady Queen of the Angels, 9/29 Feast of the Archangels, & ∼11/20-26 Feast of Christ the King on last Sunday before Advent). Make a point to put your phone away, and spend quality time with your family and friends. Jesus is risen! The wedding guests can't fast while the bridegroom is with us! (Mark 2:19, Matt 9:15)
2) CELEBRATE SMALL VICTORIES - When you finish your 'Warrior's Daily Rule', celebrate the small victory. Praise the Lord! Share your success with your family & your Squad. You crushed it! Lest we are tempted to discount the power of joyful celebration, Nehemiah 8:10 says, "The joy of the Lord is your STRENGTH."
*NOTE* - These daily disciplines are intentionally broad enough to allow for your personal discernment based on your state in life. However, remember the power of prayer is measured by the level of faith, love, & trust in Jesus that you put into it. Aim for CONSISTENCY & QUALITY OVER QUANTITY. Find something that will work for you EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. NO MATTER WHAT!