Oct 15, 2008

Praying with Poetry

Last night the sanctuary here at youth specialties offered a “seminar” on praying with poetry. As an intercessor and a lover of poetry I embraced this opportunity with eager hands. And I am so jazzed that I did.

The setting was very intimate. Out of the 2500 something youth workers present at this convention there were only a dozen who attended. It began with our facilitator CeCe organizing us in a small circle. She read aloud the brilliant words of C.S Lewis in his poem simply titled, “Prayer”. It was a poem that invited you to come, walk through each word and find yourself lost it its restful space. CeCe read the poem twice and after the second time, we each picked a word, sentence, or stanza that stood out to us and we read those out loud. Between the 12 of us we re-created “Prayer” into our own group prayer.

After this we scattered about the airy sanctuary and took with us a packet of poetry to pray. It was an incredibly beautiful act of conversation with Christ. There was one particular poem that I chose was written by George Appleton and it was the opening line that held my attention. It read as this:

Give me a candle of the Spirit O God,

as I go down into the deep of my own being 

20 minutes passed and we re-grouped. In the similar fashion of re-creating the “Prayer” poem, we created our own chorus by reading aloud the words, sentences, or stanzas from 8 different writings. One of the things that I adore the most is the fact that our God is a God of art. I am a firm believer that worship is a boundless activity and that there is no one-way to do it correctly. Some of the most cherished worship I have shared with God came through my own poetry, or a unique photography outing, or even during a long distance run. Our God is a mysterious artist who invites us to paint a stunning, messy, and a one of a kind work of art with him and it is with full joy that I dip my brush in the colorful palette of worship.

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