1. Everything starts with prayer.
"My secret is quite simple. I pray." - Mother Teresa
"Everything starts from prayer. Without asking God for love, we cannot possess love and still less are we able to give it to others." - Mother Teresa
Mother Teresa's daily schedule and the sisters of charity:
4:30-5am Rise and get cleaned up
5:00-6:30am Prayers and Mass
6:30-8am Breakfast and clean-up
8:00-12:30pm Work for the poor
12:30-2:30pm Lunch and rest period
2:30-3pm spiritual reading and meditation
3:00-3:15pm Tea break
4:30-7:30pm Work for the poor
7:30-9:00pm Dinner and clean-up
9:00-9:45pm Night prayers
This basic schedule is consistent day by day, week by week. The two primary goals of the Missionaries of Charity are love of God and love of neighbor, as found in the poorest of the poor. "For my house shall be called a house of prayer for all peoples" (Isaiah 56:7). All people were welcome to join the Sisters in prayer and worship at the Motherhouse. The chapel was simple. There were no pews, chairs, or cushions. Everything in Mother Teresa's life seemed to be stripped down to the bare essentials.
One of the most beautiful and moving things to witness was Mother Teresa in prayer - her intense love as she silently spoke with and listened to God. It seemed like a holy communion of hearts: her heart and the heart of God. One could see the radiance of her whole being. As one Sister said so beautifully: "When we see her praying, we feel like praying." (Source: Mother Teresa's Lesson's of Love and Secrets of Sanctity by Susan Conroy)
2. Receiving the Holy Eucharist was her Daily Nourishment
Jesus explained: "I am the bread of life... If anyone eats this bread, he shall live forever." (John 6:35, 51)
She would not go a single day without the Holy Eucharist. Every day she prayed, "Oh Jesus! Grant that You may be the object of our thoughts and affections, the subject of our conversations, the end of our actions, the model of our life, our support in death, and our reward eternally in Your heavenly kingdom."
"His love in action for us was the crucifixion. That's why we begin the day with Mass, with Holy Communion. That gives us the strength and the courage and the joy and the love to touch Him, to love Him, to serve Him. Without Him, we couldn't do it. With Him, we can do all things." - Mother Teresa
3. She always turned to God First.
"Our lives to be fruitful, must be full of Christ." - Mother Teresa
Turning to God first was Mother Teresa's way of doing things. When you entered the Home for the Dying each day, you never touched a single person, or helped a single person, until until you first stopped and prayed together. You would ask God for all the strength, peace, kindness, understanding, love and everything we needed to serve our brothers and sisters who were dying.
"To be able to bring His peace, joy, and love, we must have it ourselves, for we cannot give what we have not got." - Mother Teresa
This requires that we spend time with God, look at Him, open our hearts to Him, and empty our hearts of all that is not Him.
4. She sought out Silence.
"God speaks in the silence of our hearts, and we listen." - Mother Teresa
In order to hear Him, we need to be still, we need silent prayer. It is important to find an inward silence, a silence of the heart, in order to be renewed, recreated,and refreshed each day.
"The beginning of prayer is silence... God speaking in the silence of the hearts. And then we start talking to God from the fullness of the heart. And He listens." - Mother Teresa
"God is the friend of silence. We need to find God, but we cannot find Him in noise, in excitement. See how nature, the trees, the flowers, the grass grow in deep silence. See how the stars, the moon and the sun move in silence. The more we receive in our silent prayer, the more we can give in our active life. Silence gives us a new way of looking at everything. We need this silence to touch souls. The important things is not what we say but what God says to us and what He says through us." - Mother Teresa
5. She asked others to pray for her.
"I was amazed to hear Mother Teresa ask for my prayers. One might think that someone as holy as she does not need our prayers - rather, we need her prayers! But I have learned through this experience that even saints, and perhaps especially saints, need prayers. And she asked for them very often." - (Source: Mother Teresa's Lesson's of Love and Secrets of Sanctity by Susan Conroy)
6. She was very close to the Blessed Mother of God.
She was very near to the Blessed Virgin Mary, whom she loved beyond telling. She called her, "The most beautiful of all women, the greatest, the humblest, the most pure, the most holy... a model for all women."
Mother Teresa's devotion to Mary was evident in a lot of ways. The gift she often gave to others was a Miraculous Medal and also the Rosary. Even in the constitution of the Missionaries of Charity, inspired in large part by Mother Teresa herself, it states that their Society is "dedicated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Cause of our Joy and Queen of the World. We honor Her by praying the rosary with love and devotion and by radiating Her humility, kindness, and thoughtfulness towards others." Mary, the Mother of God, played a vital role in her life.
She would often tell others when you are lost, confused, distraught, scared to reach out to Mary and say, "Mary, Mother of Jesus, be a mother to me now."
(Source: Mother Teresa's Lesson's of Love and Secrets of Sanctity by Susan Conroy)