Worship with us!
- 8:15am - Prayer Time
- 9:15am - Bible Class
- 10:30am - Worship
Since David preached this past Sunday I am going to devote my blog to last week’s retreat. I asked the teenagers to visit this site and they wanted me to talk about our Sunday class. So, I’ll say a few words about that first. Two weeks ago I began teaching the High School class using Phillip Yancy’s video series, “The Jesus I Never Knew.” We are looking at Jesus afresh seeking to understand who he really is and breaking out of traditional images and childhood impressions.
Now about my retreat. This year I devoted myself to trying four different types or styles of praying:
Contemplative – This is simply sitting still and focusing on what is happening around me using all of my senses and being aware of God’s creation and presence. It is prayer without words or prayer from the heart rather than the mind. Of course sometimes words do come as expressions of marvel at what one is experiencing, but mostly there is silence. This was my basic form of prayer during my time away. I would practice this prayer while sitting or walking. It was helpful to be in a secluded spot.
Jesus Prayer – I practiced this one afternoon while lying on my cot. I repeated the words, “Jesus, Son of God, Savior.” As I repeated this phrase it became a part of my breathing. The words were offered to God and he opened my mind to images of others who used these words when addressing the Lord.
Praying Through My Life – I began with my grandparents who passed the Faith on to my parents and traveled with God through my life. Much of this prayer was spent in thanksgiving and reflection on the many people God has brought into my life at the very time I needed them. I also acknowledged how often God has shown me his mercy and forgiveness when I have sinned and fallen short of his righteousness.
Intercessory – This has become a foundational part of my retreats. I prayed through the church directory and lifted each individual before the Lord. I also prayed through the 110 or so requests that the church had given me.
In the future I want to help others in developing their prayer lives using the things I have especially learned during my annual prayer retreats. One specific plan for 2008 is to schedule four one-day prayer retreats for the Clear Lake Church.