Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Prayer Walking at Westfield

For this Thanksgiving and Christmas season, I have taken up a special project of prayer — actually of prayer walking. Four or five days a week, I am going up to the local shopping mall, Westfield Shoppingtown, for some onsite prayer.

Jesus told a parable of some different soils — some hard and compacted, some rocky, some full of thorns and thistles, and some very good soil. The seed that was scattered was very good seed—the best, in fact — but the differences in the soil made all the difference in the world in regard to the harvest.

In another parable, Jesus said that the kingdom of God is like a man who planted a seed, and then when about his business. The seed grew, though the man did not know how. He simply prepared good soil, planted good seed and then had full confidence that there would be a wonderful harvest — and there was.

So my project is to prepare the soil for a good and fruitful planting. During this next month, there is going to be a special opportunity for the seed of the Gospel to be presented as people go about their holiday preparations. It will be a witness of the coming of Jesus Christ 2000 years ago in Bethlehem, and also a consideration of why He came.

Yes, there is a lot of commercialization that has grown up around it, and for many or most people, the commercial tends to choke out the spiritual. That’s why I’m praying. I’m preparing the soil at Westfield to set an atmosphere where that will be receptive to the Gospel message inherent in the Christmas story. As I go up and down the mall (I probably look like I’m just walking the mall for my health), I am praying. Things like:
  • Father, show how remarkable you are at Westfield.
  • Show Your glory and reveal Who You are in this place (sometimes I actually sing this to a little blues riff).
  • Kingdom of God, come to Westfield.
  • Will of God, be done at Westfield just as it is being done in heaven.
  • Sometimes I pray a particular Scripture that comes to mind.
  • Sometimes I pray in tongues.
  • Often I sing in tongues.
  • And I release praise and thanksgiving as I go.
When I finish, I go to one of the sitting areas and have a little personal devotional time God. I have a handy little New Testament with Psalms. My habit is to open up the Psalms and beginning praying them to the Lord.

The Christmas story is good seed, and as it begins to be sown into the soil prepared at Westfield this season, I am watching for a harvest of joy and salvation for many who frequent the shops and kiosks of this place.

I have taken on this project because it is my conviction that things and places are sanctified (made holy, set apart for God) by prayer and thanksgiving. I invite you to join me in this, wherever you go this Christmas season.

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