Alyssa Trutter is back with Beyond the Pew, and this week she talks about one of her favorite ways to read the Bible. Imaginative prayer is about diving into Scripture and asking God what He wants us to learn.
Welcome to Beyond the Pew. In this episode, we’re going to be talking about prayer with Scripture, ways that you and your family can enter more deeply into the Word of God.
Today we’re going to focus specifically on imaginative prayer. This is one of my favorite ways to pray with Scripture and even in general, to just pray. It’s a time where you’re able to take a passage and really picture it in your mind and enter into it yourself.
So to do this, you first want to select a passage and you’re looking for a passage that tells the story, probably from Jesus’s life, but tells a story that’s very vivid, that has a lot of imagery that has a really elaborate setting, something that you can take time to imagine. So an example of that might be Jesus calming the storm at sea, where you could picture the waves and hear the wind or see the boat and hear the Apostles talking to one another. Another example of that might be the woman at the well. So you can picture the day being hot and the sight of the well there.
It’s a real beautiful way to have Scripture come alive for you.
So you’re looking for something that has a really detailed setting so that you can take time to enter into it. Once you select this passage, read through it slowly and as I said go through and see all of the different details in your mind. Going through your five senses really helps with this. So what do things smell like if you were there? What would things sound like? What would you see? What would you feel? So take the time to really picture that and to imagine that.
And then, as you do that, ask the Holy Spirit to show you what details really draw you in, where does your focus go. And they might seem like silly things at the time but what you’re gonna do with these details that catch your attention is you’re going to start to talk to God about them. So you might for example, using this story of Jesus calming the storm again, one of the things that really might draw you in is the size of the waves, the size and the sound of them as they beat against the boat and that’s just really drawing you in and catching your attention.
So once you’ve read through the passage and you’ve pictured this whole story in this whole scene if that’s where you’re drawn, ask God about that. “Lord, what is it about these waves? What does this remind me of? What does this make me think of about what’s going on in my life right now? Are there things that just seem to continue to beat up against me, continue to weigh me down or continue to scare me or frighten me or intimidate me.” So you can talk to the Lord about these things that catch your attention. It’s a real beautiful way to have Scripture come alive for you.
I think praying in this way is a good opportunity for you to talk to your children about how they picture these Gospel events. So you can each take time to pray with the same same passage individually, and then come together afterwards maybe over dinner or in a car ride and discuss what stood out to you. Maybe it’s the waves, for somebody else it might be the sound of the wind or it might have been Jesus walking on the water or calling out to the storm. Whatever it is, it’s an opportunity for you guys to share these different parts of Scripture and then to share about the ways you think that the Lord is speaking into your life, the things that he’s trying to teach you when it comes to this kind of imaginative prayer.
Good luck diving into Scripture in this new and exciting way. Please know that we will be praying for you at Ablaze Ministries. Thanks and God bless.