Really, it seems like my family has been besieged by illness in the last month or two (not to mention all our other issues!). This latest cold is really throwing me for a loop – I have lost my voice for the last 3 days, which is irritating in itself, but as if that weren’t bad enough, I also get the brain fog, exhaustion, sore joints, and everything else that goes along with my hypothyroidism because my medication somehow ceases to work when I am ill. I am SO done with being sick. Done, done, done.
Since my first post a while ago about my first prayer walk, I’ve done several around my neighborhood, but haven’t had time to sit and write about them. I’ve found it peaceful and at times gut-wrenching. It’s great for getting me out of my home, out of my comfort-zone, and mostly, out of my own experience and into the experience of others. Here’s what I’ve found works for me:
- I look at each door and imagine if the occupants would allow Jesus in. If not, I pray they open their doors to Him. If so, I thank God for that home. (I’ve found very few homes that feel open, and the ones that do feel open often surprise me.)
- I pray for help where homes need it – where things look broken, falling, in need of cleaning or repair.
- I try to get a feel for each street and pray based on that feeling. Happy street? – May the joy come from Jesus. Fearful street? – May they find comfort in Jesus. etc.
- I pray for the gospel to be preached clearly and correctly in every church I pass and that the doors be opened and people to be drawn in.
- I pray every time I pass a bench or table that conversations would be deep rather than superficial; that Christians would not be ashamed of the gospel, and that the would be brave and bold to share.
- I pray for protection over schools, as well as boldness for students to speak about their faith (and for opportunities for teachers to do so safely).
- I pray to know my neighbors, and to open my home and be a light.
- I walk fairly quickly to cover ground, but am not worried to slow down when I feel certain houses need extra prayer. These houses have included: lukewarm Christians, people on the fence about becoming Christian, powerful Christians, or people with special problems (fears, money, anxiety, whatever emotion seems to pour out of the house).
I’ve found it freeing and incredible to know the power of prayer and to be able to walk through the streets in my neighborhood with a purpose. I love to be able to walk by homes and know that each and every person is important. It’s amazing to feel the differences of each street and to know that no matter if a street is sad, friendly, unique, happy, or lonely – they all need Jesus. Prayer walking has made a tremendous difference in my personal prayer life and the way I look at our community, and I’m grateful for the experiment.