Emerging Prayer

21 Aug

Last week I wrote a post on Emerging Women in connection to the synchroblog I participated in earlier this month. I asked the ladies if they were willing to share their “emerging” journeys. Many did, and there was a lot of honest conversation, some of which was painful. One topic which came up frequently was prayer. Once people start deconstructing from church they are not always sure how to pray anymore. Through church we have been taught to use Christianise words, and almost “formulas” about how to pray. So how do you do it when you don’t believe in some of the things you were taught in church anymore? How does our prayer life emerge?

Prayer for me is a chat with God, I do it when I’m washing up, grocery shopping whatever. A lot of my talking with God probably isn’t what many would describe as prayer. I might just say stuff like “it’s a really nice day today Lord.” or just “please help me get through this.” It says in the bible that God knows our every thought, so there is no used in pretending. If I am upset or disappointed with something I’ll tell him. I think my prayer life with God has to be like how I would talk to my husband or someone equally close, as my relationship with God is deep and personal, not superficial. Although I have to confess that, like most of us, my walk with him can be superficial at times, as I allow it to get that way. My prayer goes deeper, but when it comes to praying with people I feel like I haven’t the words anymore. That doesn’t necessarily mean I don’t know what to pray, it’s more a case of I don’t know how to pray it. What I simply mean by that is that I don’t think my prayers come across to others as being spiritual enough anymore. Recently a friend asked me to pray with her about a situation and I had to really dig deep to bring the spiritual lingo out of the bag. Where does that formulae come from anyway?

A few months ago I came across something called praying in color. This is a form of prayer where you write down the persons name who you are praying for, then you draw a picture around that persons name. Around the edges of the picture you write key words that you want to pray for. For example “good health”, “courage”, “friendships” etc. You can view a sample of what I am writing about . All the times whilst you are drawing (and you don’t have to be an artist to do this!) you are praying for the person or situation, you are meditating etc. It’s a really good way of getting children involved in prayer too.

So, how has your prayer life emerged?

Edited to add:  I just realized that my link to praying in color did not post, you can find it here.

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14 Responses to “Emerging Prayer”

  1. cindy August 21, 2007 at 12:14 #

    lyn,
    prayer has been on my mind a lot lately. i’ve been planning to make a post soon. i’m going to comment here by saying i’ll reply in a new post at my blog—soon i hope. i like that our thoughts have been wandering in the same direction.

  2. Erin August 21, 2007 at 15:54 #

    You know, Lyn, I hesitate to talk about it these days because I have moved quite a ways away from the “normal” prayer routine.

    I tried to describe it here in several ways, but realized, like Cindy, it will require more space and thought than I have here.

    So maybe a Synchroblog on prayer is in order?

  3. cindy August 21, 2007 at 16:26 #

    erin that’s a dandy idea. and i almost never say dandy.

  4. lynhallewell August 21, 2007 at 17:06 #

    prayer synchroblog, love that idea.

  5. Erin August 21, 2007 at 17:22 #

    Ok so who’s in charge and what’s the question?

  6. lynhallewell August 21, 2007 at 18:38 #

    You ha ha! No seriously, I don’t mind. Maybe the three of us could announce it together in the form of a synchroblog on the same day – and then set a day for the real synchronisation!

    Mmmm stuck on the q though! What does prayer look like on your spiritual journey? Prayer Emergent-see (dumb I know!) How does prayer look in my life today compared to the formula I was taught in church? Prayer, God and me…. Send me your questions! Cindy too!

  7. cindy August 21, 2007 at 19:42 #

    lyn i like your original question, ‘how has your prayer life emerged?” or we could simplify it to what is your prayer life like or even how do you pray… just thoughts off the top of my head

  8. Erin August 21, 2007 at 19:48 #

    OK, Lyn, you can spearhead 😉 , and I like all the questions you posed so I’ll leave that to you, pick one. We can blog-announce it, and also pop off e-mails to people we think would like to participate.

    All we need is a date. In the next few days, or are we thinking further out to prepare?

  9. lynhallewell August 21, 2007 at 21:25 #

    I’ve sent you both an email!

  10. Lauren December 6, 2007 at 20:19 #

    I think it’s so easy to fall into a ritual of Christianese in prayer, especially when you are raised in the church. I have recently learned to get away from that, but rarely can find any words to say at all. You’d think I could find something to say to God. 😉

  11. lynhallewell December 8, 2007 at 10:01 #

    Thanks for commenting Lauren! I think God actually relishes our silence at times, so we can just be with him rather than constantly talking. He knows what is in our hearts and minds 🙂

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Synchroblog - How Do You Pray? : Beyond the 4 walls - August 27, 2007

    […] came about through a conversation Erin, Cindy and I had following a post I did last week called Emerging Prayer. In that post I wrote about how I see prayer as my “chat” with God which I do where and […]

  2. Calacirian » Prayer - Synchroblog - August 27, 2007

    […] Lynn (Beyond 4 Walls) have organized a Synchroblog for today about prayer. Lynn asked a question on Emerging Women about how our prayer life has changed or emerged as our faith has morphed and changed. This lead to […]

  3. How Do You Pray? « Become A Robot - August 30, 2007

    […] of “Beyond The Four Walls” was talking with two of her friends last week about prayer, and they decided to start a Synchroblog (simply inviting other bloggers to […]

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