Five ways to pray during Thy Kingdom Come
From Ascension to Pentecost, we encourage you to live out the commitment in A Methodist Way of Life “to pray daily”. Explore our five ways to pray below and click the drop-down menu at the bottom of the page for creative ideas for putting them into practice. You can also download a PDF to share with others, digitally or by printing and posting (please follow COVID guidelines) and download the graphics for your own use in TKC resources.
The good news about evangelism is that it’s God’s work – and we are invited to participate in word, deed and prayer. These three are equal partners, and so as well as speaking and sharing the good news, we must be praying for God to act in people’s lives and stir their hearts. There are many different ways to pray and these are just a few suggestions to encourage and inspire you this year. Most of them can be done individually or in the community with minimum advance preparation.
No prayer is ever wasted. Ignatius of Loyola says that whenever you pray, you should start by reflecting that God is gazing on you right at this moment with love. All our prayers are heard by God, even if they’re not always answered in the ways we expect or in the timeline we want. The more we pray, the more we’re in tune with what God is doing and saying.
You may want to pray for people who are a million miles from wanting to know Jesus, or people who are already seeking him. God is already working in their lives, whether they acknowledge it or not. We encourage you to take part in Thy Kingdom Come in whatever way you feel God lays on your heart.
Be prepared that you might be changed as well! When we spend time in God’s presence, things happen that we may not expect. Embrace God’s presence, and pray about anything God might say to you during this time.
Pray throughout the day
While some people enjoy a dedicated time of prayer at the same time every day, others may prefer shorter, more frequent prayers.
Take time out in prayerful reflection
The Holy Spirit is already working in people’s lives. Rather than asking God for things, you may wish to simply reflect prayerfully on the people you are praying for and lift them to God in thanks. Trust God to act.
Tell people you’re praying for them
It’s encouraging to know someone is praying for you, so why not contact the people on your heart, let them know you’re praying for them and ask if there is anything they would like a prayer for? Although the Thy Kingdom Come movement is about people coming to know Jesus, we know God is already working in people’s hearts, and cares about everything going on in their lives.
Be artistic and creative
Prayer doesn’t have to be about words! Art, jewellery, dance, music – it can all be a form of prayer. Use your artistic gifts to pray differently this year.
Praying with others can be a powerful experience. You could pray with others in your church every day during Thy Kingdom Come. Finish by commemorating Aldersgate Day, when John Wesley’s heart was “strangely warmed”, and pray together that all those you’ve prayed for will have their hearts warmed by God.
Use the menu below to explore creative ways to prayer this year. For more examples of creative prayer (digital and in person), take a look at our page for the Year of Prayer, some creative prayer ideas from Methodist young people, 24-7 Prayer or the Northumbria community.
- I want to pray throughout the day
- Set reminders on your phone to pray throughout the day.
- Put sticky notes around your home on objects remind you of each person you’re praying for.
- Put two bowls on your desk. Fill one bowl with pebbles and move a pebble to the second bowl every time you pray for someone.
- Think of a number of moments across the day where you connect with God – like when your feet touch the ground first thing in the morning or when you go for a walk – and dedicate them to praying for your five people.
- Change your phone background to feature the names of the five people you’re praying for, or a photo of them.
- I want to spend time in prayerful reflection
- Centre yourself with a simple prayer, such as a single line of Scripture. Say the name of each person you’re praying for, leaving space to hear from God, and reflect on what the person means to you. Trust God to act in their lives.
- Pick something small that represents each of the people you’re praying for. Carry them in your pocket or put them on your desk, and every time you touch/see them, place that person in God’s hands.
- Recite the names of the people you’re praying for each time you wash your hands for 20 seconds.
- Create a daily examen (a simple, prayerful review at the end of your day) and finish each day by thinking about why you’re grateful for the people you’re praying for.
- As you walk down the street, envision God stretching a hand to the people behind each door you pass, and them reaching out to take it.
- I want to tell people I'm praying for them
- Write (or create) prayer cards to send to people.
- Call the people on your mind for a general chat and find out how they’re doing. Ask them what they’re longing for in their lives right now.
- Use your church – a bulletin board, or an empty car park – to let the community know you’re praying for them. This could be a simple A4 poster, or something more creative.
- Use your church website and social media to promote Thy Kingdom Come – you can find graphics online.
- Send people you’re praying for an encouraging Bible verse, such as John 6:37, 1 Peter 5:7 or Psalm 23:1.
- I want to be artistic and creative
- Ask someone artistic to create a simple ‘colour-in’ sheet and send it to others in the church to use as part of their prayers.
- Create a bead or knotted bracelet, with a bead or knot representing each person you’re praying for.
- Draw/paint something that represents the person you’re praying for. Add to it throughout the ten days.
- Create a visual display in your church that people can add to throughout the ten days. Consider creating an area just for your under-18s.
- Use a collaborative document like Jamboard to create an artistic space where people can contribute to a shared creative image.
- I want to pray with others
- Dependent on Covid guidelines, hold a with other churches in your area, to come together to pray. You could go on a socially distanced prayer walk, collect prayer stones for a cairn in the church car park, or use street chalk to write or draw your prayers.
- Post your prayers on the Methodist website’s Prayer Wall.
- Hold a short daily Zoom or Facebook Live intercessory prayer service for people to pray together. Ask people to write (first) names in the chat.
- Share your prayers in a confidential WhatsApp group with others in your church.
- Pray with a friend via phone or video call each day.
- On Aldersgate Day, invite the whole church to remember the people they’ve been praying for, so that you can pray together for all their hearts to be warmed by the Holy Spirit.