Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Imaginative Prayer

About a year ago I heard about this great podcast called Pray-As-You-Go. They're devotionals that you can download from iTunes or from their website. There's one for each weekday, and they're about 12-15 minutes long. I've been using them on and off during my quiet times for about a year. Lately, I've been using them a lot more frequently. I'll either listen to it on my way to work, or I'll take a walk and listen to it during my morning break. Usually there's a scripture reading, and then a few questions and or thoughts to meditate on. It's a great devotional tool. I mention it because today's was especially awesome. I've been learning a lot about spiritual formation and a lot of the disciplines that go along with it. One of the practices that has really impacted me is Imaginative prayer. It's a practice that was started by Ignatius of Loyola.
Here's how Mike King describes the practice in his book "Presence-Centered Youth Ministry:

"When I practice imaginative prayer, I often select a scripture passage that I want to spend time meditating on and praying through. I imagine what it must have been like to live in the situation described in the passage. I interact with the text of scripture, contemplating it, asking question like these:

What do I see?
What do I smell
What do I hear?
Who do I see myself as in the passage?
How am I reacting to the events?
What is the Lord saying to me?

I read the text several times as I ask these questions, being patient and taking time to listen."

It was cool because today's podcast utilized this practice...And today, God used it to remind me of some things that he'd spoken to me earlier this year. It was a great way to start my day!

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