Contemplative Prayer

Prayer is Communicating and Being with God

My grandmother was a professional level talker. In her younger years, she could talk non-stop for 30 minutes or more without taking even a slight breath. My grandfather was the strong silent talk. They regularly had bridge club at their house and came up with a system that if my grandfather wanted to say anything he would kick her under the table and she would be quiet for a minute so he could talk. 


If prayer is simply communicating with God it involves talking, listening and being with your loved on. I was use to the talking part in prayer.  Before I learned about contemplative prayer the talking part is mostly what I did.  Dear God, Help me with this and this and this and this. It was like I was giving God a honey-do-list.  With all my wordy request thankfully God didn't kick me under the table. 


Finding contemplative prayer has exploded my prayer life. Whereas at once it was hard to find much to talk about now the possibilities of talking, listening, and hanging out are endless.


Types of Contemplative Prayer

Lectio Divina

A way of reading scripture or other holy books where you let go of what you think it means and open yourself to what God wants to say to you using the scripture. 

Guided Meditation

Our God is a creative God who wants to interact with us in creative ways. Guided meditation is using your imagination to experience God in a playful way. 

Contemplative Reflection

A way of wrestling with God or yourself about what you believe or think. This is a thinking prayer. 

Examen

A form of prayer in which you examine your life in light of God's love. Involves looking at each day or a set period of time and seeing when you are moving closer to God and when you are moving further away. 

Body Prayer

This includes a wide array of prayers from walking the labrinth, to a body sculpture exercise with scripture, to being more aware of your body and it's feelings.

Breath Prayer

The simplest contemplative prayer in which you simply breath and repeat the name of God on your in breath and a prayer on every out breath.