Wednesday, 4 December 2013

8. ACTS 1: Adoration

There is a well known suggestion for a balance prayer life: ACTS. This stands for

 1. Adoration (adoring God, standing in awe at God, praising God)
 2. Confession (admitting all the ways we are not perfect, and resolving to do better)
 3. Thanks (saying thank you to God for all that we have and are)
 4. Supplication (asking God for things we need, asking for help for ourselves or others)

The idea is that a balanced prayer life consists of all four elements. Many people find that they actually just do 4, with not very much of 1, 2 or 3. But think of them like the food groups. A balanced diet of prayer will have all the different elements.

For the next four sessions, we will focus on one of these at a time. Often, you will want to make sure you do all four each time you pray. But for now, we will split them out and just look at each one at a time.

So, this week we begin with ADORATION.

What makes you think about how amazing God is? For some people, it might be being at the top of a high mountain; or a beautiful sunset; or the ocean waves; or a huge storm. You might be filled with awe at wild animals; or tiny insects; or vast crowds of people; aerial photographs of the world, or even space and the stars and planets. And what about God's story in the Bible, or in the world around us? Maybe beautiful churches; a soaring cathedral spire; music, whether a soloist or a rock concert; pictures and youtube clips of charities working to relieve hunger and poverty and suffering; pictures of Jesus being born on a Christmas card, or pictures of the crucifixion or empty tomb?

After thinking about this, make an adoration collage. You could either do this with paper, scissors and glue, using pictures from postcards, magazines, newspapers and printouts from your computer: or you could do it electronically, searching for the images you want and making a digital collage. Print it out at the end if you do it digitally, though.

Write 'I adore you, God' or simply 'Adoration' in the middle, and surround it with images that each make you feel awe, wonder, or love for God and for all that God has made and done.

Then, stick it up on your wall so that it is a reminder for you of how amazing God is.