A week of prayer

Called to a Week of Prayer    (The following is what we used to help give us focus for our week.)


Every year at GCC, we set aside a week for prayer, and this year is no different... Well actually, it is!


This week we are inviting you to take a prayer pilgrimage, a journey if you will.  In the Sanctuary here at GCC we will be arranging 10 stations of prayer that you can come and experience, individually or as a group.


You will experience more different kinds of prayer than you may have for some time!!


You are invited to come, any time of the day or night, and pray.


The foyer will have seating and tables for small groups who are waiting to enter the Journey. Please feel free to pray around the tables, or quietly talk. This means that your family or small group can come to pray as a group too.


When you are ready, enter the Journey at the designated place. Then follow the stations at a comfortable pace.


Please feel free to return as often as you like, we simply ask that you respect those who are with you on the journey.


God moves when His people pray. Let's enter into this week ready to pray, expecting God to visit us.







A Rune before Prayer


I am bending my knee
In the eye of the Father who created me,
In the eye of the Son who purchased me,
In the eye of the Spirit who cleansed me,
In friendship and affection.


 


This journey begins here...


 


- Station 1 -
Confessional



Prepare yourself for this time with God.



Psalm 24:3-6 says:
     
3 Who may ascend the hill of the LORD ? Who may stand in his holy place?
4 He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not lift up his soul to an idol or swear by what is false.
5 He will receive blessing from the LORD and vindication from God his Savior. 
6 Such is the generation of those who seek him, who seek your face, O God of Jacob.


Consider what you have done 
that might have grieved Gods heart. 


Think of what you have not done, 
that he asked you to do.
Make a mental collection of these sins.
Move to the bowl, and wash your hands.


As you wash and dry your hands,
ask God to forgive you and to cleanse you of your sins.


 





- Station 2 -
The Jesus Prayer




The history of the Jesus Prayer goes back, as far as we know, to the early sixth century. It was spoken repeatedly throughout the day. The prayer summed up the human condition, and God's wonderful provision, through Jesus Christ.


The classical form of the Jesus Prayer is,









"Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner."




We invite you to sit or stand,
and pray this prayer a number of times,
each time consider it's deep truth.


"Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner."


Take your time with it,
repeat it silently or on your lips.
Own it, make it your prayer.


When you're ready, move on to the next station.


 





- Station 3 -
Fear Factor Wall




In our lives there are fears that drive and motivate us.  Fear of failure, fear of loss, fear of the unknown...


In this station we want to name our fears. By recognizing them we begin to diminish their power in our lives. We want to give them over to God and ask for his help in gaining victory over them.


Consider honestly the things that make you fearful.
Write them on a Post-It Note.


As you pray over them,
ask God to enter your fears with his love,
and ask him to deliver you from them.
(Remember that perfect love casts out fear.)


Take them and give them to God by sticking them to the wall.



When you're done, go on to the next station.


 







- Station 4 -
Worry Bucket



In Luke, Jesus says:



"Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?
Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?


And do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink;
do not worry about it. For the pagan world runs after all such things,
and your Father knows that you need them. But seek his kingdom,
and these things will be given to you as well."



At this station we want to give you a chance to face your worries.


Collect a stone.


Close your eyes and imagine that all the things you worry about are in that stone.


Quietly tell God about each of these things you worry about.


Take the stone and drop it in the bucket of water
as a symbol of letting go of these worries and letting God take care of them.


 





- Station 5 -
Bringing Our Offerings



At this time of prayer we want to bring what we have of value and offer it to the one who has forgiven us, is healing us, delivering us, and providing for us: God our father.



COME TO ME!
Come to Me, My child!  Advance towards Me!
Reach out to My warm trusting hand,
Stretched out to your longing soul!
Let My hand embrace your weaknesses.
Set aside your fears of being rejected,
For I knew your sins before your were born.
Still, I call you My beloved child.
Come to Me, My child!  Reach out to Me!
Let My fiery Spirit draw you towards Me;
Let My love engulf your suffering heart;
Let My light transform your desiring soul,
So you may be gracefully granted salvation.
For I am the power of love and forgiveness,
And the Good Shepherd of compassion.
Come to Me My child!  Reach out to Me!


Now, take a piece of paper and draw or write down something that God has given you.
Place the slip of paper in an envelope, and deposit it someplace as a sign that you are giving these things to God and choosing to put Him first in your life.



When you are done, you may move on to the next station.


 






- Station 6 -
Silence




The LORD said, "Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the LORD , for the LORD is about to pass by."  Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the LORD , but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake came a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper.
When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave.  Then a voice said to him, "What are you doing here, Elijah?"
1 Kings 19:11-13


Silence is not a negative, not an absence at all, but an overwhelming presence, an awesome something that brings life to us.


Silence is a wonder for all the faces that it has, all the garments that it wears, the nuances and qualities that come with it: the silence of a starlit night in a wilderness; the silence of a deserted church, empty yet holy, the engulfing silence of fresh snow, the silence that passes in a glance between a loving couple, running like electricity through a wire. All different. All magical.


There is a reason, surely, why Jesus and all the prophets sought out the wilderness in their quest for inspiration and to connect with God.  They were seeking holy silence -- the consuming presence of an empty, quiet space, which is the surest conduit to God and the things of God. So...


 


Find a comfortable stance. 
Sit, stand, kneel, or lay prostate on the ground.
Be still. Chase the random thoughts from your mind.


And listen.


Quietly wait on God.


 


When you feel ready, move on to the next station.


 





- Station 7 -
Worship and Thanksgiving




Psalm 100
1 Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands. 2 Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing.
3 Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture. 4 Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.
5 For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.



What would a "Joyful noise" look like if it was drawn on paper with ink or paint??  The Psalmist didn't have that opportunity, but we do.


So get some paper and markers,
and make a joyful noise on paper.


Express your thankfulness to God
through color and design.



When you're done, do another, and another and another. There is no limit to God's faithfulness or our praise.


When you're done, leave them for others to see and be inspired by.  Then move on to the next station.


 


 





- Station 8 -
A Book of Life



Find a comfortable seat and take the Book of Prayer.


In it write down, or draw pictures of your prayers for people or needy situations you are aware of.
Include the names and needs if you like.


Look at some of the other prayers people have written down, and pray for them as well.


Whatever prayers you are praying these days, you can include them anonymously in this book.


 


 






- Station 9 -
Invitation to a Party



He said to them;



"Make every effort to enter through the narrow door, because many, I tell you, will try to enter and will not be able to.


29 People will come from east and west and north and south, and will take their places at the feast in the kingdom of God. 30 Indeed there are those who are last who will be first, and first who will be last."
    
Luke 13


Jesus tells us that there is going to be a feast, a party for all who have walked the narrow path, entering through the narrow door. We are exhorted to make every effort to follow Christ as his disciples.


We also need to tell others of this banquet to come. We need to pray for them and encourage them towards the Cross of Jesus.


Who are you praying for, that they might know Jesus today?







Invitation to a Party


Father, there are people I know who need to make it to your great Banquet in heaven. Please work in their lives and draw them to your Son, Jesus Christ.


Grant that I or someone who knows you might be able to lead them towards you, by our actions, words, and prayers.


Father, they need to know you and your love. Please introduce yourself to them.


These people are:


 


Take time to fill out an invitation to this banquet. Enter in the names of those you will pray for who need to know God - who need to be invited to this Banquet.


Keep it as a reminder to pray for them and care for them as you have the opportunity.


Take time now to pray for each name you've placed on the invitation.


 






- Station 10 -
Receive God's gift



State these facts slowly and deliberately with your voice, and receive them as gifts from God.



I am accepted...
I am God's child.   (John 1:12)
As a disciple, I am a friend of Jesus Christ.   (John 15:15)
I have been justified.   (Romans 5:1)
I am united with the Lord, and I am one with Him in spirit.   (1 Corinthians 6:17)
I have been bought with a price and I belong to God.  (1 Corinthians 6:19-20)
I am a member of Christ's body.  (1 Corinthians 12:27)
I have been chosen by God and adopted as His child.   (Ephesians 1:3-8)  
I have been redeemed and forgiven of all my sins.   (Colossians 1:13-14)
I am complete in Christ.   (Colossians 2:9-10)
I have direct access to the throne of grace through Jesus Christ.   (Hebrews 4:14-16)


I am secure...
I am free from condemnation. (Romans 8:1-2)
I am assured that God works for my good in all circumstances.  (Romans 8:28)
I am free from any condemnation brought against me and I cannot be separated from the love of God. (Romans 8:31-39)
I have been established, anointed and sealed by God.   (2 Corinthians 1:21-22)
I am hidden with Christ in God. (Colossians 3:1-4)
I am confident that God will complete the good work He started in me.   (Philippians 1:6)
I am a citizen of heaven.   (Philippians 3:20)
I have not been given a spirit of fear but of power, love and a sound mind.   (2 Timothy 1:7)
I am born of God and the evil one cannot touch me.   (1 John 5:18)


I am significant...
I am a branch of Jesus Christ, the true vine, and a channel of His life.   (John 15:5)
I have been chosen and appointed to bear fruit. (John 15:16)
I am God's temple.   (1 Corinthians 3:16)
I am a minister of reconciliation for God. (2 Corinthians 5:17-21)
I am seated with Jesus Christ in the heavenly realm.   (Ephesians 2:6)
I am God's workmanship.   (Ephesians 2:10)
I may approach God with freedom and confidence.   (Ephesians 3:12)
I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me.   (Philippians 4:13)


As a reminder of this gift of God's, take a small gift with you. Read it aloud each day and watch what happens.


Remember how God see's you.


 





This journey ends here.


The Lord bless you and keep you;
The Lord make his face to shine upon you,
and be gracious to you:


The Lord lift up his countenance upon you,
and give you peace.


in the name of the Father,
and of the Son,
and of the Holy Spirit.
Amen


 


the end/the beginning


Please feel free to return to this place any time during the week and try it again. Alternatively, you may also come to experience the stations of your choice.


Go now and enjoy the blessings God has given you. Don't let this be an ending, only a beginning...

2 comments:

  1. Randall, this is beautiful. Thank you for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I really enjoyed this post, and the journey it takes. I would have loved to do this!

    ReplyDelete





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