The Prayer Adventure
During the weekdays following Palm Sunday you are invited to explore a new experience. Our Lenten reading will be completed and the following days leading to Resurrection Sunday are Holy Week. Can you imagine yourself living and being with Jesus during this last week up to His resurrection?
This is an exercise “sanctified imagination” in prayer.
Before you say not possible keep in mind this is an old tried and true practice dating back to the 16th century…you can do it. You may think you don’t have a good imagination but if you have ever worried you can imagine.
Our imaginations don’t always tell us what’s true. For example, if you imagine Jesus scolding you stop!!! Let that image go and ask the real Jesus to come and take the imposter’s place.
Begin with prayer. Ask God to help you; ask for the will of God to be done in this exercise. Most important is to be present with Jesus.
I am the way…” – Jesus (John 14:6)
Jesus refers to Himself in the present tense. His name is not, “I Was,” or “I Will.” His name is “I Am.”
To sense His Presence, you must embrace Him, in the present tense. If Jesus seems far away, guess who has moved?
The integrity and intimacy of your walk with Jesus is revealed, by what you do with this precious time. If you are tense, take a deep breath, and lean into the intimacy of His Presence. You will always find Jesus in the present tense.
Accept the invitation to turn to Jesus and gift Him. In our imagination suffer with Jesus. It is as if Jesus were saying, ‘Let me tell you what it was like, what I saw, what I felt. Please don’t interrupt; just stay with me and listen.’” Just stay with Jesus, listen, and offer comfort– a sip of cold water, your hand on his cheek, a gentle embrace, etc.
We cannot stop what is happening, nor does Jesus want us to. This is so hard. We want so badly to change the situation or run away. We are tempted to distance ourselves physically or emotionally, so we don’t feel the pain of another. We fear it will overwhelm us.
It takes courage to suffer with anyone who is about to die and to feel so helpless. That’s why we need grace. We can ask God to help us stay with Jesus and not fall asleep in one way or other.
Get involved in what is taking place. Don’t just be an observer.
Don’t worry about being distracted; when you notice your mind wandering, gently bring yourself back to the scene.
Set aside 20-30 minutes for your prayer.
The Scripture Passages: (Choose one each day)
- Monday:John 13 The Last Supper/Jesus Washes the Disciples’ Feet
- Tuesday:Matt 26:36-45 Jesus at Gethsemane
- Wednesday: Mark 14:43-49 Jesus’ Arrest
- Thursday:Luke 23:26-27 Jesus on his way to be crucified
- Friday:Matthew 27: 33-56 The Crucifixion
- Saturday:Matthew 27:57-61 The Burial
At the end of the exercise gently withdraw yourself from the scene and end the prayer period with a prayer of thanks.
Blessings on these wonderful prayers you are about to have.