The logo for the 'Growing in Prayer' initiative is a tree., but if we are going to grow, where should we put down our roots? What feeds us spiritually? John Wesley believed we should all be regularly involved in 'The Means of Grace' namely Prayer, reading the Bible and Communion. These things, he said, did not make us Christians but were the routes by which God enabled us to best connect with him and grow. Over the next two weeks let's make a commitment to reflect on the 'Means of Grace' and increase our use of these wonderful gifts.
You can download a printable version of these ideas by clicking here.
If you began a journal during ' Growing the Vision' (or even if you didn't!) Try to make time this week to sit with your journal somewhere quiet that seems beautiful and comfortable to you. Think about what prayers are on your heart and LISTEN to God rather than speaking, jot down or draw any images, thoughts and words that come to you. What did you feel God was saying?
Try praying somewhere different this week, go for a walk or try praying while you iron/cook/work out/swim/garden/craft/farm. Is it easier or harder? Are you more aware of God here?
Try praying with other people. Remember you can pray silently if that's easier or just 'talk' your prayer points then say the Lord's Prayer together at the end.
Retail Therapy! - When last did you buy a new Bible? Why not treat yourself to a new one this week? Maybe in a version you are less familiar with. Whether you download to your tablet or buy a 'real' one, Don't be afraid to make notes on it and underline things- Bibles were meant to be used.
Bibles in Church — Think about whether your church needs Pew Bibles so that everyone can follow the text being preached on. If you have them do you need to stock up on more or perhaps buy some child friendly ones?
Favourite Scripture — Encourage people in your church to share their favourite verses. This could be done in a blog, or in a small church you could simply bring them to the service and read them out. They could even be in a collage in the church or turned into a PowerPoint.
Just read it! If you have never read much of your Bible before, make a commitment to read Marks Gospel this week. If your church doesn't have a Bible Study group maybe it is time to think about starting one?'
If you have a communion service in this fortnight, why not try something different? Talk to your minister about using a different liturgy or having some discussion time to talk about what communion means to everyone. Ask one of your members to bake the bread and bring it along. Get a white sheet and have your members write their names on it. Use it as a communion table cover to remind us that Christ died for everyone.
If you have PowerPoint collect as many different images of communion as you can and show them during the service.
If it is possible pray for every member of your Church during the intercessions giving thanks for all those people that you live in communion with.