As I lace up my walking shoes, there’s a shift taking shape in my heart. I release the day’s stress, embrace time with God, and listen to what He has in store for me. Deep within the trenches of grief and overwhelm, my habit of contemplative prayer walking intensifies.
My prayer walking journey began eight years ago. I was challenged by a friend to walk for 30 minutes a day for 100 days. As each day passed, I had to pray my way through the next. Now, as I work through the losses and trauma from the past year, knowing how to walk prayerfully is my lifeline. It’s my anchor to keep my eyes above the waves.
Contemplative Prayer Walking
I walk with a scripture or a word from God in my heart. As I walk, I express my gratitude and seek God’s face for the duration of the miles I have planned for the day. I use the time to evaluate my life, set goals, or write songs. Oftentimes I discuss my joys, sorrows, and impending decisions with Him along the way. I walk, pray, and cry throughout each mile. During my time with Him, He reminds me of His promises in scripture. And I use those promptings as directives to meditate on as I walk.
Over the past eight years, I’ve developed a practice of contemplative prayer walking. It allows me to practice Holy Noticing. Holy Noticing came from a book I read by Daniel Stone. When applied to walking prayerfully, I define it as meditating on the Word of God, listening to the Voice of God, and considering God’s Creation with a sense of wonder and gratitude.
There are many benefits to this type of walking. I’ll share five from my personal experience:
- Prayer walking helps me give my worries to God.
- It helps me connect with nature, God’s magnificent creation.
- Prayer walking helps slow my thoughts down.
- It strengthens my ability to focus on His voice.
- Prayer walking increases my awareness of His presence.
I’ve created a FREE introductory guide that you can download here: Walk Fit. Walk Prayerfully. This simple practice of contemplative prayer walking has made a powerful impact on my life. And I pray that God will use it to bless you as well!
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These are two of the books that have shaped my Contemplative Prayer Walking practice.
And you can find more of my favorite books here: Alida’s Favorite Things