Flickr photo from this source.
I’m curious to know if you’ve ever been on a prayer walk? Would you please tell me in the comment section/link below?
The weather (in North America) is changing to mild temperatures, and the beauty of Spring is here.
I’d like to inspire you to carve out 20-45 minutes, (or more, if possible) within the next few days from the time you read this, to absorb the beauty of creation, and the God of it.
This beautiful picture gave me the kick to write this post. Let’s both do it. Go to your calendar now, check for a spot, and mark it down. Morning time, evening, weekend, whatever. You truly have 20 minutes, I know it. Go ahead, I’ll wait. We both know-once you mark it down-it’s quite likely to happen.
With this time, you can allow yourself the experience of a guided prayer walk, using some, or all of the guidelines I’ll lay out below. It will help create a place in your heart to experience the presence of God within and around you. It’s really the perfect Rx for the spring season.
Some suggestions for your walk time:
Items to bring along-
– Comfortable, durable, Shoes
-(if needed) Sunscreen/basic first aid kit
-Notepad and pen
(Some of you may want to bring a Bible. If you feel this is important, I am suggesting that you read Scripture before you go on this walk, and if you’d like, bring along a passage, or verse that is on your heart.)
First, allow yourself to acclimate to your environment. Notice your surroundings. Walk deliberately, and also wait, sit or rest, once in a while, and take in your surroundings. Put hurrying aside.
Second, as issues, or chatter run through your mind, push them gently aside, or if they are quite intrusive, jot them down, and give yourself permission to think of them, at another time. (You may may find it helpful to briefly lift those things to God in prayer, and purposefully “hand them over,” before you continue your walk.)
Third, continue until you feel like you’d like to find a comfortable place to sit, or rest, for a little while. The jot down something about your surroundings, and associations that may come to mind about God, and God’s character. Note your response to God, or his creation. Or, record other thoughts you feel are meaningful, or maybe things you would like to explore further, at some point.
Fourth, enter into a time of prayer. It can be any length of time. This is a time of conversation, and also worship. Worship involves adoration of God. Speak, but also listen.
Fifth, be where you are.
Sixth, Continue your journey until you are ready for it’s conclusion. During this time, you may want to spend more time in prayer, engage in vigorous exercise (walk at a rapid pace, for instance), gaze appreciatively at nature, or sit in quiet, or a bit of each. It’s a free-play, or freeform period of the hike/walk, where you can have all the freedom to enjoy it in the way which makes the most sense for where you are right now in your life. Sense God’s love for you, and his delight in you. If you cannot, ask him for the grace to do so. Forgive others, and forgive yourself.
Seventh, when done, offer a brief prayer of thanksgiving, and accept God’s grace. Receive from God. After a few minutes, write down noteworthy thoughts, experiences, ideas, sensations, or insights that happened along the way, or during your prayers.
Eighth, Later, share some, or all, of your notes with at least one other person.
You may want to walk with another friend, a spouse, or in a small group etc.
How rewarding this is!
For this, I suggest that a period of prayerful silence be observed during the whole time,
and conversations between people be postponed until after the walk is through.
Group discussion after the walk may prove very fruitful.
If you give this a try, I’d love to hear how this goes.
Will you please share your experience here?
(Photos you’ve taken can be sent to ovationeneterprises (at) verizon (dot) net)
May God be with you.