We ask each group to begin and end their weekly meeting with prayer. It is also encouraged to share this responsibility so that everyone at some point does the opening or the closing prayer. I understand, like anything in life, this time can become routine. While I would not recommend doing some of these each week, there are some ways to add some variety to your group’s prayer time that will get everyone involved and maybe push some or all of you to a new level of openness.
- Standard: Take prayer requests at the end of the meeting. Once they are written down ask for volunteers to pray for the requests. Don’t let someone pray for his or her own request.
- You can also ask someone to take the list of requests home with him or her and pray for them during the week until the next meeting.
- To The Left/Right: Form a circle and have everyone pray for the person on either their left or right until everyone in the circle has prayed. Feel free to ask the person you’re praying for if he or she has anything specific for you to lift up.
- Split Up: Have the men go into one room and the women stay. Have a standard prayer time but focus on specific issues that people may not want shared in mixed company.
- One Word Requests: Have the group form a circle. One person begins with the phrase, “God you are…” Each person completes the brief sentence with one word until prayer works its way around to the beginning of the circle. This is repeated with the phrases: “God I thank you for…” and “God I am asking for…”
(I recommend only doing this style of prayer once a season – twice at most, during a ten week season.)