Tuesday, March 22, 2011

    Creating a Life of Prayer: Questioning

    We are sharing a series of posts on prayer as we journey together through the season of Lent. It's our hope that these conversations will deepen not only your prayer life but also the prayer lives of the youth you serve. Be sure to check out parts 1, 2, and 3.

    Can a question be a prayer?  I imagine most prayers are questions: Why God? How God? When God? Who God? We've only to look to the book of Job or many of the Psalms to know this was true of our spiritual ancestors. Sometimes, it's enough to ask the question and accept that easy answers are not part of what we can expect from God.  But perhaps if one person's prayer can be a question, another person's prayer can be an answer.

    We recently created a prayer station at church that started with inviting people to write questions of faith on index cards.  Some of these were deep, tough questions about pain and suffering and loss.  Others were simple questions about why the world is the way it is.  We spread these questions out on a table and provided two journals.  Worshippers were invited to sit at the table, meditate on the questions left by others and then, as they felt moved by the Spirit, each wrote a prayerful response in the journals.  Using an idea I saw elsewhere, we intentionlly selected journals with translucent paper such that you could see the layers of prayer responses on the different pages.

    This approach to prayer reminds me of the process theology notion that in the act of prayer we can be connected through God to each other, like an invisible web with God at its center and threads radiating outward connecting us to those we pray for and those who pray for us. 

    See here for a different approach to creative prayer that shares this same understanding of our connectedness in God. 


    jops said...

    make God the center of everything