THEME: God’s presence is always near.
GRACE: Lord, make me more aware of your presence in my life.
- In a journal, note the day, time, and place you’re sitting.
- Open with a few moments of silence. Rest, and breathe deeply.
- Complete the following sentence in your journal: Today, I feel ________________.
- Read these words slowly (aloud or silently):
Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices;
my body also will rest secure,
because you will not abandon me to the realm of the dead,
nor will you let your faithful one see decay.
You make known to me the path of life;
you will fill me with joy in your presence,
with eternal pleasures at your right hand. (Psalm 16:9-11, NIV)
- Pause for a few moments of silence.
- Choose one of the following practices.
Option 1: Worship – Music [5-30 minutes]
Watch: Take two minutes to watch this short video about the importance of worship, from an interview with N. T. Wright.
Respond: Then, wherever you are, find a worship song that is especially meaningful to you and listen to it. If you do not have a particular song, you might listen to “Not in a Hurry” (link provided below). Or, if you’d like to stay off of technology for the moment, think of your favorite worship song and sing the melody quietly or write out the lyrics in your journal. Allow the poetry and beauty of the music to draw you into a place of worshipping God.
Once you are finished, note in your journal what the experience was like for you. Is it strange to worship God through music in a personal setting? If so, why do you think that is the case? How does musical worship help you remember the fact that God is present with you?
Suggested song: “Not in a Hurry,” by United Pursuit
Option 2: Worship – Art [30-60 minutes]
Take 20 minutes and complete the “Worship – Music” practice above. Then, continue in an attitude of worship by reflecting on the image below.
The Incredulity of Saint Thomas by Caravaggio
When you have had some time to view the image, answer the following questions in your journal:
What aspects of this image stand out to you? Notice the expressions on the disciples’ faces; what do you imagine they are thinking/feeling? What does this image tell you about how much Jesus desires to be present with you?
How might visual art help you connect with God’s presence in worship?
- Summary: Write a brief summary (five sentences or less) of what you discovered during your time of worship.
- Closing Prayer: Lord, make me more aware of Your presence in my life.
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