Talking with Jesus in interactive and creative ways can engage all generations and personality types in filling an hour with prayer. Embrace creativity when designing your prayer room to inspire and lead others in meeting with God.
If this doesn’t come naturally to you then:
Find artistic and creative people in your community and ask them to help you. Why not also involve young people in designing and building the space? This may increase their sense of ownership and therefore involvement in the prayer room.
Think about why you’re praying. The vision for the week of prayer is ‘praying that people you know might know Jesus’. Design your prayer room around this vision.
Keep it simple and bold. Creative doesn’t mean cluttered. If in doubt make the room welcoming, colourful and include prayer guides or stations people can draw on if needed.
Make room for other people’s creativity. Leave large spaces for things like drawing, writing, painting or sculpting as an expression of prayer and allow your community to shape and fill the room as the week goes on.
Engage all five senses. How could you use striking images and verses to catch the eye, music and sound to inspire or facilitate worship, things to touch or hold to focus the mind, or things to taste and smell to help people consider what they’re praying about?
Prayer stations can be a great help to those who find praying for an hour challenging. Feel free to try these six ideas for stations in your prayer room:
The family tree
Find a real tree that will fit into your prayer room, alternatively you could draw or make one. Invite people to think about the members of their families or their friends who are yet to discover the love of Jesus. Invite them to write their names on luggage labels if you’re using a real tree, or a sticky note if not, and to hang or stick them as they pray for each in turn. Pray that they will come to know Jesus, but also for personal courage for yourself to talk about Jesus and to invite others to church activities.
The wailing wall
What are your most heartfelt requests to God for your family, the Church, your city and your nation? Make space on a wall, or on a large net or piece of fabric, for people to write or draw their requests to God. When they’re finished with their own request, invite them to pray for someone else’s. Watch it fill up as the week progresses.
The sorry bin
Gather a rubbish bin (or paper shredder), paper and pens, and invite people to reflect on and pray the words of Psalm 139:23-24:
Search me, O God, and know my heart;
test me and know my thoughts.
See if there is any wicked way in me,
and lead me in the way everlasting.
As areas of sin are revealed to them in their own lives, invite them to write them down and ask the Lord for forgiveness. As a symbol of His grace and forgiveness finish by throwing the paper into the bin or shredding it.
Place a bowl of water next to some pens with ink that will wash off skin. Invite people to consider whom in their lives they might hold something against. Ask them to write the names of those they need to forgive on their hands, and as they wash the names off in the water, to ask Jesus to help them forgive them and to let go of any resentment they may feel.
Your kingdom come
Gather large maps of your area and this nation, as well as local and national newspapers. Encourage people to pray Your kingdom come, your will be done over the places and situations that stand out to them. If they are unsure how to pray then praying for the positive – healing, reconciliation, justice, love, forgiveness, salvation – is often a good place to begin.
With thanks to 24-7 Prayer