Contemplative prayer: A silent Advent communion

By Yvette Walker

Recently I asked some friends to describe prayer. They talked about what the word meant to them (without saying it). All of them used the same word.


Prayer simply is a conversation with our Father. And it’s important to spend time with him because it enriches our personal relationship with him.

But many of us are worried about our ability … and podcasters, who are known for our conversation skills, this is for you, too. Many of us feel unworthy and don’t know what to say.

So, what do we do?

We go back to the basics and model Jesus, who often spent time alone in the presence of God.

One way to do this is to practice a form of prayer called contemplative or centering prayer. The two practices are different but share an important benefit: listening.

In many prayer forms, we acknowledge God, praise him for his gifts, then ask him for our needs. There is nothing wrong with that. But in these listening forms of prayer, we don’t do any of that.

We don’t ask for needs.

We don’t praise him.

We don’t talk at all, not even in our heads.



Yvette Walker of the Positively Joy podcast

Walker is the host of Positively Joy, a multicultural podcast that takes a mostly Christian look at the search for light in all seasons.