All kinds of prayers and requests 1

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Ephesians 6:18

Monday, July 14, 2014

Learning the dance

Speen school at fete

Speen School headteacher Mrs Nayna shepherding her charges into place to carry out their dance moves at the Speen Fete on Saturday

 

Eph. 6:18
And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.

WHAT is prayer, and how do you go about it? Do you have a “this is the way I pray” concept, and has that been shaped by the typical practice at your church?

If you go to prayer meetings at other churches, and the growing number of cross-denominational ones, your comfort zone will have been challenged! However, we soon learn how to pray using a variety of styles and approaches, and when we join others, especially friends of a different tradition, we quickly fall in to follow what they do, and learn what works for them.

I think of it like learning the movements of a dance, like country dancing. There are basic movements you learn, like the circle, and the procession – and the pas-de-deux and other steps. Every dance uses some of these moves, and the order will be different, but the moves will be the same.

We don’t just do our own moves (disco dancing might be an exception!) but we mirror our partner and we follow the leader, who then in turn becomes a follower, and all the interactions have a harmony about them. This is about everyone ‘making music’ in the broader sense, and that is what some of Jesus’ words mean literally. He talked about the practice of sumphoneo – agreeing together – and the related word sumphonia is usually translated music.

This is the practice of harmonising together, and it is just the same as when musicians get together – whether they play from written music or follow a more rock/pop improvised genre. In formal music, not everyone plays the same notes, but the notes are those which harmonise, and everyone keeps to time. In rock and pop, the ‘rules’ are looser, but the principle of creating harmony is the same, and everyone knows how important it is to ‘find the groove’ and stay in it.

We’ll be exploring some of the movements that make up the ‘dance’ of “all kinds of prayers and requests” this week.

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