with yet another quake hitting haiti today, i thought you might need some postive ways to pray for this country and all that is happening there.
on sunday night at thinplace we remembered haiti by passing around a box of raw sugar and pouring out some and holding it in our hands as we prayed for the nation, for relief workers, for order in the midst of confusion, for those in need of basic things like food and water. then we tasted it to remind us that God is still good in the midst of this painful tragedy.we took home small packets of sugar to carry with us in our pockets to remind us to pray for haiti throughout the week. we closed with a prayer
We pray for peace for those in need tonight. We pray for hope for those losing hope here and abroad. We pray for order in the midst of disorder. We pray for wisdom in the midst of chaos. We pray that your love and comfort will fill Haiti and all who are seeking to serve there. We ask that you help us to be compassionate to those in need there and here at home. All that I love into your keeping. All that I care for into Your care. Be with us by night; and as darkness closes our eyes with sleep. may we waken to peace of the new day. AMEN
my friend chris cummings, the director of youth ministry at forest hills UMC in tennesse, and his wife joanna have created several interactive prayer stations to remember haiti that they used with their youth group on sunday and will curate for their entire church tonight.
chris has given me his blessing to post these here. i hope that you are encouraged to pray creatively for haiti and for other places of poverty and pain around the globe and around your neighborhood.
prayer stations for haiti by chris and joanna cummings:
Often times, we here about disasters and tragedies somewhere else, we have a moment or two of sadness, and then we change the channel. But this is not what we are called to do as Christians, we are called to respond in prayer, love, and many other ways.
Tonight, we will experience prayer stations which will help us spend some time thinking and praying for those in Haiti. Let all of it sink in, don't try to quickly push it away.
Take this time now, and pray for Haiti…
Hall of Prayer set up:
Print out 20-30 different pictures of the Haiti earthquake, include some of people, destroyed buildings, and even pictures of rescue teams organizing and helping.
Tape them all up in a hallway or on one wall. (If wall, make sure you re-title to "Wall of Prayer") Place pillows on the ground around the pictures. Post the sign explaining this station where they would first walk up to it.
For Part 2, have a basket of pens and stack of note cards, and have an empty box or basket for them to place their cards when they are finished.
Here is a good link for from pictures Katu.com (http://www.katu.com/news/81498907.html)
Hall of Prayer
Part 1 – Start Here
Take time to look deeply at what is going on in Haiti. Look at all the pictures. See what the current living conditions are like. See the damage done by the earthquake. Put yourself in the shoes of the Haitian people. What do you think this experience feels like?
When done reflecting here, continue to all of the other stations and then return here for Part 2.
Part 2 – End Here
Now that you have looked at all of these pictures, and prayed in many ways for the situation in Haiti; take time now to write down your own questions. Write down the questions that come to mind when you think on these events and as you see them in pictures and on the news. What struggles do you have with what has happened in Haiti? What doubts come to mind about justice? What questions are raised about God? What are the things that deep within you cry out when you hear of this? What can you do to help?
Take as many note cards as you need. Write each question on its own note card. When you are finished, place the questions in the box.
Prayer for those who are suffering set up:
Print out several small or have on large map of the world (with Haiti marked) and of Haiti close up. Have a basket of pens and stack of "post-it notes" for them. Once again use pillows, chairs or couches for them to be able to sit and think on these things.
Make sure you post the sign that explains the station.
Prayer for those who are suffering
Touch the map. Look at where Haiti is located in relation to us. See how close it really is. Take post-it notes. Write prayers for those who are there hurting right now. Pray for those who have been injured during the earthquake, those who have lost loved ones, those who need food, water, and shelter. Write your prayers for them and stick them to the map.
Prayer for those who have not been heard from set up:
Set up an altar, table, or anything else that will hold dozens of candles (the number of candles depends on the number of people who will go through the stations, if the candles all become lit simply quietly go over and blow out a few so that everyone can light one.) It would be good to have a cross or another Christian symbol as part of this station.
Once again, post the station sign that explains it.
Prayer for those who have not been heard from
There are thousands who are still not found and have yet to be heard from. Thousands of families are waiting to hear and see if their own have survived.
It is an ancient Christian practice to light candles in memory of loved ones and those who need the love of Christ.
Light a candle in memory of those yet to be found, think of their families, and pray for them. Watch the flame of your candle while you pray.
Prayer for those who have gone to help Set Up:
Set up a large canvas or sheet of butcher paper on the ground. (You will probably want a tarp under it) Place paintbrushes, cups of water, and paints on paper plates on or around the canvas or paper. It would be a good touch to paint "Haiti" very large and in the middle.
Post the sign describing the station in a place where they can see it.
Prayer for those who have gone to help
There are thousands of people and millions of dollars and supplies being shipping into Haiti, even now. Take time now pray for those who are going into Haiti to bring help and hope and healing. Pray that God may use them to help the Haitians.
Be creative and paint this prayer to God. Use symbols, pictures, words, letters. And as you paint, continue to pray for support and help for those going and those who will go to help.
Prayer through Scripture Set Up:
Set up a place with chairs or on the floor with several Bibles. Different translations are good too. Give them a space where they can have their own little spot to reflect on the scripture.
Post the sign explaining the station where they can see.
Prayer through Scripture
Scripture is often used in times of teaching and for rejoicing, but it also has purpose in times of pain. Reflect and meditate on the scripture verses below.
- What do you make of this
- Does it truly reflect the character of God or does it reflect the feelings of the writer? Or Both? Maybe it is how you feel?
Read Psalm 143: - How is our prayer for help here being answered in Haiti right now?