Walking in Prayer
Angela Rigby Doble reflects on the spiritual possibilities of a familiar daily routine.
English Standard Version © Crossway Bibles
Angela Rigby Doble writes:
Our dog has helped us a lot during the lockdown, getting us out and exercised. He’s a great companion, full of love and joy (if not patience and self-control). When I walk him I usually pray, for my own concerns and for Conwy where I live – more recently, its closed shops and cafes, locked-up churches and empty quay.
It’s been even better to prayer-walk with a friend, letting God take the lead and bring people and situations to our attention while we ‘socially-distance’ as required.
A church I knew organised prayer-walks from time to time. Some would stay behind praying in support, while the rest went out in pairs and reported back afterwards. It gave the church a wonderful sense of shared purpose, and undoubtedly blessed the area.
Of course, you don’t have to go out to pray for your surroundings. ‘Walking‘ in the Bible often means doing something day by day, sticking with it, making it a habit. Every day we can set out determined to keep in step with the Holy Spirit and to go God’s way. Who else knows what’s round the corner? – we certainly don’t, as the coronavirus pandemic has demonstrated.
Even if our buildings are barred, even if we aren’t technical enough to connect via emails, let alone Zoom, we have so much to rejoice about and to give thanks for. God cares about us and hears our prayers – nothing external can stop that.
One evening on my solitary dog-walk I was overwhelmed with loneliness, and in that moment became aware of Jesus at my side. One of those odd experiences many would dismiss as imagination, but which Christians know are true. I found a simple prayer on the Church Mission Society website:
Jesus is walking with us, whether we always feel it or not, whether we’re stuck at home or out and about resuming ordinary life. He’ll never abandon us. What could beat that?
Bydded i Dduw Dad,
y cyfodwyd, trwy ei ogoniant, Grist oddi wrth y meirw,
eich deffro i fywyd newydd.
Bydded i Grist,
a gerddodd gyda’i ddisgyblion ar y ffordd i Emaus,
gynnau ynoch dân ei gariad
a’ch nerthu i gydgerdded ag ef yn ei fywyd atgyfodedig.
Bydded i’r Ysbryd Glân,
a anadlodd yr Arglwydd ar ei ddisgyblion,
eich anfon allan i ddwyn ei fywyd newydd i’r byd.
May God the Father,
by whose glory Christ was raised from the dead,
awaken us you to new life.
who walked with his disciples on the road to Emmaus,
kindle in you the fire of his love
and strengthen you to walk with him in his risen life.
May the Holy Spirit,
whom the risen Lord breathed into his disciples,
send you out to bring his new life to the world.
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