The Prayer Journey
Several years ago a spaceship encountered serious trouble and began to maneuver erratically in outer space. Engineers grappled frantically for the cause. Finally, only after the loss of the craft, the problem was discovered. The spaceship flight had to be prematurely aborted from its mission because of the omission of a hyphen. One thirty-second of an inch had been erroneously omitted from the logging. The tiny connecting bar, a hyphen which was seemingly insignificant, was vital to the success of a flight in space.
Prayer may seem insignificant to some Christians, but prayer can be compared to the tiny hyphen which was an integral part of a successful and expensive space flight. Prayer is the essential “hyphen” which connects the soul to God. There can be no relationship with the Eternal without prayer. Daily power is synonymous with daily prayer. Prayer is the root and strength of all Christianity.
The simplest description of prayer is “Having an audience with God.” Spiritual experiences are great and are not to be minimized; however, the child of God who attempts to thrive on “spiritual experiences” alone will become disappointed and disillusioned sooner or later. God designed His creation from the very beginning in the Garden of Eden to walk and talk with Him. The Christian who desires fulfillment in his life will explore the depths, climb the heights, search the length and breadth in surveyance of the far-reaching dimensions of prayer. That is what this book is all about. It is intended as a tool for the Christian to enhance and enrich his prayer life.
The Prayer Journey method of praying covers eight areas of dimensions in prayer. These areas of prayer will guide us into praying non-repetitiously. Both the new Christian who is beginning to learn to pray and the experienced prayer-warrior will benefit from applying the Prayer Journey method to his life. The Prayer Journey concept is flexible and may be adapted to numerous situations, both in private devotions and in small or large prayer meetings.
The idea for the Prayer journey concept was first born in the heart of my friend, Betty Strawcutter. She used this method of prayer to enhance the spiritual growth of her two young children. It worked! She graciously gave me permission to put the Prayer Journey in book form and to adapt it in any way I saw fit in order to bless the reader.
Apostle Paul wrote, “I exhort therefore, that, FIRST OF ALL SUPPLICATIONS, PRAYERS, INTERCESSIONS, AND GIVING OF THANKS be made…”
(1 Timothy 2:1). Notice that he put prayer as a priority (first of all). Then he carefully made some distinctions concerning types or areas of prayer: supplications (petitions), intercessions and thanksgiving. As we understand more fully that there are in fact different areas of praying, this understanding will assist us in more meaningful and focused praying.
The Prayer Journey consists of eight areas of prayer:
– Praise and Worship
– Repentance and Forgiveness
– Praying the Word
The “journey” concept is derived from traveling in prayer from one area to another in one given session. Of course, it is always in order to begin with praise and worship. Even if time will not permit covering every area of prayer during a given prayer session, praise and worship should never be omitted. This area of prayer always creates a wonderful atmosphere in which to continue a prayer time. Our Lord always deserves our praise and our worship, no matter what else has to wait!
The chapters of this book have been prayerfully designed for use in the daily devotions of the reader. You can be assured that many times during the course of writing these exhortations and choosing Scriptures pertaining to the eight areas of prayer covered, the author has resorted to prayer and sincerely seeking the direction of the Holy Spirit. The many Scripture verses given at the close of each chapter may be used for further study in that area of prayer or may be adapted to actual prayer.
No doubt, as you probe deeper into praying the Prayer Journey method, you will search the Scriptures and find many additional Scripture references to all eight dimensions of prayer covered in this book. As you find them, you will want to enlarge the particular area of prayer with the new Scriptures which you have discovered.
The challenge of prayer never ends! Praying is a wonderfully satisfying privilege given by Almighty God for His children to enjoy and continually learn more about. The disciples asked their Master, Jesus, “Lord, teach us to pray.” What a noble request! Somehow the spiritual appetite of these followers of the Lord Jesus had been whetted for prayer. I believe it was because they had observed the consistent, fervent and effectual prayer life of our Lord. With this point of view in mind, I would ask this question: If we choose to follow a consistent, faithful prayer life, are there those in our homes, or wherever others observe us, who will become affected to the point of hungering for a communication and relationship with God?
How to Apply the Prayer Journey to Group Praying
When a prayer group is participating in the Prayer Journey, each phase or area of the journey is done in a different location. If a church building is used for the prayer meeting, the auditorium and Sunday school rooms may be utilized for the journey. Praise and worship should be held in a room (perhaps the sanctuary) large enough to accommodate the entire group. From the praise and worship room the group moves on into other areas of prayer at their own discretion as far as the time element is concerned.
Posters describing the area of prayer to be done in a particular room should be placed at the entrance of the room. Also it is very helpful to the prayer if there are additional posters inside the room with Scriptures pertaining to the particular prayer being prayed in that room. Especially with larger groups involved, it is helpful to have previously appointed prayer leaders in each room. The prayer group leader may lead in focused prayers or may ask a member in the group to lead in prayer. Also a leader may prove invaluable to prayer group members who need assistance in understanding the particular area of prayer or in actual prayer itself.
The participants should be informed at the outset of the Prayer Journey as to the time frame for the entire prayer meeting. It is a good idea to finish the journey with singing. In the singing phase everyone comes back to the room where praise and worship began. This will bring the whole group together to end the prayer meeting with a joyous victory in singing praises to God.
The Prayer Journey has been a blessing to small groups, large groups of hundreds, families praying together in the home, all-night prayer sessions – including numerous churches in a joint prayer meeting, and other settings. However the journey is used, it has always proven to be a powerful method of praying for those who are participants.
“The Prayer Journey” introduction excerpted from “The Prayer Journey”. Written by Fredi Trammell.