St James offers you an opportunity to have a meditative prayer walk, using the labyrinth in the church garden, on the south side of the church. [picture]
The labyrinth is a path leading to and from a central point. It is not a maze; you cannot get lost. There are no dead ends. The point is not disorientation, but orientation. The labyrinth in St James follows the design of the one in Chartres Cathedral. Anyone can pray in a labyrinth, and you can use it as you wish.
You may wish to consider one of these four ways of using the labyrinth:
1) Ask God a question as you enter the path. Then, as you walk slowly through the twists and turns, listen for an answer. Let your steps and your silence invite the presence and guidance of God.
2) Start your journey to the centre with confession (you may want to visualize your sins being left behind with every step you take). When you reach the centre, journey out with affirmation (perhaps visualizing yourself picking things up or putting things on–like the righteousness of Christ, the smile of the Father, the purity of the Holy Spirit, etc.). Pause at the exit and give thanks for your cleansing journey.
3) Recite a breath prayer (a short phrase such as ‘Lord have mercy’, ‘Here I am’, ‘Maranatha’, ‘Come Lord Jesus’, ‘Not my will, but yours’, ‘your kingdom come’) as you navigate the labyrinth, perhaps praying a different prayer on each leg of your journey.
4) Lay down your burdens, step by conscious step, as you walk to the centre of the labyrinth (each step along the way releasing your worries or cares). In the centre, pause to thank God for taking your burdens on himself. Then count your blessings and give thanks on the journey to the exit. You may wish to meditate on Jesus’ words from Matthew 11: 28-30: ‘ ‘Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.’