Praying in Color
During Lent, I have started a daily activity of praying in color (and challenged the congregation to join me). It’s a pretty simple concept. Each day, you spend some time in prayer with some sort of color – crayons, markers, colored pencils or pens. (You can download Lenten calendars to use here.) I have never done anything like this, and though I am far from an artist was pretty excited to give it a try.
Each night, before I collapse from the busyness of the day – I pick up my colored pencils and clipboard and look at the blank calendar box. Some days, a word or image stands out from my time that day and I write or color them. Perhaps part of a conversation from the day really sticks with me, or something from a scripture passage I read, or a question posed in the book I’m reading. A few nights, I kind of doodle or choose colors that express my day, my emotions, or something I’m ruminating on. There is no rhyme or reason to what comes out on paper. There is no agenda. There is not a deep process of logic as part of this prayer for me. One person from Faith who is also doing this practice chooses a person each day – writing their name, coloring, and praying for them throughout the day. This kind of prayer lends itself to creativity, freedom, and flexibility.
It has been an interesting experiment to spend time with God in prayer through coloring. It is a much more open, and whole-body prayer experience than many that I’ve tested out. Instead of focusing on thoughts, words, or ideas – praying in color is a connecting place for those things that are beyond the limits of our language. That doesn’t mean this kind of prayer doesn’t engage our thinking – but that we are not limited to only “thinking” in prayer. Certain images have emerged that are very powerful for me – even though my “go-to” prayer tends to be focused on words or quiet.
I hope that you will take some time to give Praying in Color a try. You are welcome to join us for a special Prayer Lab session devoted to a prayer practice in color this Sunday, March 14 at 10 am on Zoom.