To prayer walk is to target prayer for the area you plan to walk. Being able to see the area and the people you are praying for may give you inspiration on the best way to pray for these areas and people. Prayer walking is considered “intercessory prayer” – praying on behalf of other people and asking God to work on their needs. One very early example of prayer walking is when Abraham interceded with God to spare Sodom and Gomorrah after God revealed his plan to destroy the cities.
Plan your prayer walk routes and map them out by logging onto the Internet and printing out the routes where you plan to walk and pray. Include routes that can be driven. Any area of your community can be suitable for a prayer walk – for instance, if you have a college nearby, students getting ready for exams could benefit from prayer as you walk and pray by the college. Your prayer walk should last about one hour, not including instruction and giving prayer walk teams their assignments, which takes about 45 to 55 minutes.
Decide on buildings or areas of interest on your route. These might be areas where you feel prayer may be needed. Be aware of recent events in your community and in surrounding areas, and consult your local media for ideas. For example, if you read in the newspaper that a small child died in a particular neighborhood, you might choose to do your prayer walk in her neighborhood to pray for her family.
Place an announcement in your church bulletin for several weeks, letting congregants know you are organizing prayer walking teams. Once you have positive responses from several interested families and individuals, organize each prayer walk team. Include those who are disabled and assign them to a route that can be traversed by car.
Decide on a day and time for the prayer walk and spread this information to your prayer walk teams. Assign each team to a specific route. If a team member has knowledge of a specific need in the community, assign that person’s team to the area in need. Assign two or three people to each team so nobody walks alone.
Choose where to meet – this might be your church sanctuary. Plan your prayer walk schedule, which should include at least a half-hour for instruction before every prayer walk. The prayer walk should last about an hour. Let each team know what time to return from their prayer walk and factor in time for reflection and discussion of God’s work in your ministry. Use information you gain from this reflection time and discussion to help you set up a subsequent prayer walk.
Instruct each prayer walker to bring a small Bible, songbook or hymnal, journal, pen, scripture cards and a bottle of water to stay hydrated. You may need to use the Bibles to read a particular passage as you are on your prayer walk; the hymnals help for times when song is appropriate. The journal comes in handy when you take time to pause during your walk for a few moments of thought, allowing you to write down reflections and struggles.
As you plan and participate in your prayer walk, be sensitive and discreet about your praise and worship.
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