by Sharon Ely Pearson
Creating a Prayer Space reminds everyone in the household that prayer is an important part of everyday life. When you create a Prayer Space in your home, you are reminded of God’s presence at all times, while also making a connection between church and home. Such a space can be created using the center or an end of the dining table, on an end table or coffee table, on a mantel or shelf. You can also post notes, prayers, sayings, petitions, pictures on the refrigerator, bulletin board, or even the bathroom mirror. Invite family members to check out the space on a daily basis.
Simply by placing a candle,cross, Bible or other object on a piece of cloth can designate a special place. Using the colors of the liturgical year are most appropriate: green for seasons of Epiphany and post-Pentecost (Ordinary Time), blue or violet for Advent, white for Christmas and Easter, purple for Lent and red for Pentecost. You can use a scarf that is square or oblong. A great find is a plaid or striped scarf in the liturgical colors that can be used all year long . . . invite a rainbow into your space! Paper, place mats or napkins can also suffice.
A special bowl or basket on a table will serve to remind others to pray about a special intention and to place their own petitions or requests on a piece of paper for putting into the bowl or basket. A candle placed in a special spot can also call the family to prayer during time of need.
For special days and seasons, add other objects such as a book, pottery, flowers, fruit, pictures, prayer cards, icons, salt, water, oil, a branch of a tree or bush. Leaving the Prayer Space intact all the time and changing it with the liturgical or holiday seasons may work for you family. Or you can design a Prayer Space each time you gather to pray with your family by placing the objects reverently and inviting others to join you in creating the space.
You may want to create a portable Prayer Space that is brought out just for the family time together. Put together a prayer box out of a gift box or a plastic storage tote filling it with sand, stones, shells or a cloth. Others might want to arrange a quiet place to sit and reflect: a comfortable chair, books, and quiet music. Or you may want to create an area outdoors where it is conducive to prayer and meditate. Your children may like to create their own Prayer Space in their bedroom or a favorite spot in the house.
The ideas can be endless – the challenge is to follow through and set up a space today!