Prayers of adoration for complex lives

1. Reflective prayers DVD

Rainbow colours on the surface of a CD

Lee Abbey Reflections DVD

This unique DVD captures the unmistakable presence and spirit of Lee Abbey, the internationally renowned community, conference and retreat centre. Drawing on images from their estate and the creative worship experience of community members, this DVD will enhance the meditations of any congregation, small group or individual.

More info

Worship and meditative material on DVD:

  • themed into four key areas: Celtic reflections, worship reflections, Psalm 23 reflections, meditations;
  • featuring music from Simeon Wood and John Gerighty;
  • PowerPoint compatible versions also included on the DVD.

2. Party popper prayers

Party poppers

It's not only youth who can have a good time! It's good to be able to give thanks and celebrate God and one another, so why not play some appropriate uptempo party music and get excited about God?

Give each person a party popper (after safety reminders, etc) and go round the group giving thanks to God or praising him. Then, either each individual fires their party popper at the end of their own prayer, or go round the whole group praying, then let off all the party poppers together at the end with one great big 'Amen!'

3. 'Light of the World' prayers

The power of lighting candles is well known and often brings more time for reflection. If possible, turn all the lights off, leaving one large single candle on a central table. Invite everyone to light a tealight candle from the main candle representing 'Jesus, the Light of the World'. As they light their own candle, placing it carefully on the table (do make sure that it's protected with something like a tray, ceramic tiles or a table mat covered in foil), they should mention the name of the person they are praying for (no need for details; God already knows the thoughts and prayers of our hearts).

Take it further

As people have shared their prayers and lit their candles, arrange for someone in the group to share Celtic Evening Prayer or Night Prayer (sometimes known as Compline) from the Northumbria Community, or some liturgies available for download from the Iona Community, or any of the many books of intercessory prayers such as John Pritchard's Intercessions Handbooks 1 and 2.

4. Pass the parcel with the psalms

A present in pink wrapping paperYou will need: a prize, newspaper, sticky tape, pre-printed stickers, CD player.

Create a multi-layered 'parcel' with a prize in the centre that people will enjoy together (eg, a large pack of Maltesers or some nice pens). Instead of forfeits or a joke for each layer, include some verses of praise and adoration from the psalms. So, when the music stops, the person removes the next wrapper and finds a verse from a psalm, which you have put into the plural - eg:

We praise you because we are fearfully and wonderfully made. Your works are wonderful, we know that full well (Psalm 139.14).

We will sing of the Lord's great love for ever; with our mouths we will make your faithfulness known through all generations (Psalm 89.1).

Music

Don't forget to have some good uptempo music - preferably from the charts - that's suitable, uplifting and appropriate. If nothing is suitable, a good example would be 'Celebration' by Kool & the Gang. Make sure the parcel is big enough to get round the whole room so as many people as possible get 'a turn'.