Prayer Jars

One of the things I love about teaching children, is how they soak up information and are keen to try and put it into practice. Our children’s workshops are as much about dancing as they are about finding creative ways to pray and continue the prayers once home. A great way to do this is with prayer jars.

What you need – 

  • Jars
  • Glue
  • Tissue paper
  • Ribbons
  • stickers
  • Anything else you’d like to use to decorate

Once you have all the bits, cover your work area, put aprons or old t-shirts on the children if necessary and then let them loose! Whilst they are decorating talk to them about some of the things that they might pray about, things to be thankful for, what they are afraid of, friends or family that might be sick. Encourage them once home to write it down, or draw it on paper and put it into the jar – doesn’t need to be complicated, just a few words – it’s their act of praying and giving it to God. After a set amount of time (6 months to a year) they can then empty the jar and talk about all that God has done though their prayers.

Prayer Jars – Aug 2016

How’s your Soul – Bible Study

Something that I have been challenged by today is how you can encourage others to be part of your faith journey, to encourage a conversation about what’s on your mind and what God might be saying to you.

To try and bring a thread to the workshops I am running, I am trying to pick themes in the run up to them. Not only am I hoping this will focus what God will say to me and want to share with those that come. But also allow opportunities for those that can’t make it to still be part of the journey, and for those that can make it to start thinking about what God maybe saying.

The first workshop of this year is on Saturday (will post details shortly) and we’re going to look at ‘How’s Your Soul’. Making the effort to be real with yourself about where you are at, what God is saying etc.

The YouVersion Bible has some great plans that you can follow, you can do this online or via an App that you can download to you phone/ tablet. So if you want to join me for 5 days. I’d love to hear how you get along. Click here to find the plan.

Make Your Space

It’s the last day of 2016, lots of people spend this reflecting on what has been and start to look ahead to what may come in 2017. Many people count down till the year ends, start the new one with a long list of things they are going to do, saying ‘2017 will be the year…’

But is that really the case…. stating things that you want to get through in 2017, your dreams, hopes etc. does that help you achieve them? There has been lots that has gone on this year, good stuff and bad stuff, which I am sure is the same for a lot of people. However, when I look ahead, there is one thing that I want more than anything…. SPACE.

Space in my house, space in my life, space to be me, space to dance, space to just be! Some of you maybe mothers, and others not, but I am sure each other can resonate with the fact that we all feel at some point like there’s not enough time or space. To carve out some personal time for projects (including writing this blog) or just space to think is really hard. So one thing I am praying more than anything for is that I give God space, which will allow me to have space.

God catches us unawares, rallies us in our darkest moments, sends us buzzing in the crazy ones. He is always there and waiting, let’s allow him the space to have that relationship.

In December we had a Dance, Move, Pray session. This was simply just a space to gather and move, spend time to with God. Myself, Lizzie and Julia were there, for each of us, it was what we needed right then. The opportunity to just be in a space, be close to God, to pray and move however much or little we wanted. I want more of this! I crave more of this!

So lets be real. Decide ONE thing as you enter 2017. Where are you and God? Where do you want to be with God?

I’ll leave you with a little clip from our dance space in December.

He’s got a Big, Big Heart

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Big Big Heart Prayer activity

Sometimes we need to know how much God carries us in his heart. This is a simple activity that you can do to help with reflection.

What you need:

  • Big heart drawn onto a piece of card
  • A mat or cloth to put on the floor in case of spillages
  • Different paints and brushes or sponges
  • Wet wipes to clean and a bin for dirties
  • Optional – felt hearts that people can take away with them, rope or something to mark out a big heart on the floor.

Invite participants to paint their hand and when they are ready print their hand inside God’s heart. There is the option if they wish to write their name in their hand in the heart, they could also choose to print a hand and write names of people who need to know they are in Gods heart too. Once they’ve done their hand print they can move into the heart drawn out on the floor and sit or stand inside Gods heart. When and if they feel ready they can then move and choose to dance right inside Gods heart.

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Hand prints in Gods heart – Dance Retreat 2016

The Lords Prayer

The Lords Prayer is a set of common words used across the world to pray to God, learn more about him and grow in our faith. As I started to run more and more workshops I recognised that the prayer offered a great opportunity to draw the group together at the beginning and end of a session using movement.

Over a period of time I began to build a set of choreography that could be used along the side the words, which could act as an icebreaker at the beginning of workshops. Moving and saying Gods word together.

Since then, many people have asked if there was a copy of the movements so they could take it back to their church and their group to share. Since sharing is central to what I do, I finally got round to making an instructional video. Use the movements as a starting point and add your own flavour or feeling to what is already there. Each of us pray differently and each of us move differently, so the movements are not necessarily one size fits all. They are however accessible to all ages and abilities and can be adapted as necessary.

We’d love to hear if you do this in your group, and how you get on, so make sure you let us know!

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