Please read this page before following the particular suggestions!
- Before any spiritual exercise, prepare yourself. Take time to relax and to still your mind, body, heart, emotions and any other part of yourself. All of you is made and loved by God, involve your whole being. There are many stilling exercises in books or on-line , for example https://www.birminghamvineyard.com/news/stilling-prayer . Try not to come with expectations of what ‘ought’ to happen, but be open to God reaching you.
- Godspace is about recognising God in all of our lives. These are some of the many tried and tested methods, that we find particularly helpful, you may like them or want to explore other methods. Please be aware that the names we use for different disciplines may not be the ones that come to mind for you, so take time to look around (but do let us know if there is a discipline that draws you that we have not included yet, perhaps we need to add it!) You may also find that you prefer the exercises associated with a particular school of thought or monastic order (consider the Jesuits https://www.pathwaystogod.org/ , Celtic https://www.northumbriacommunity.org/article_types/celtic-spirituality/ ).
- You may be surprised that meditation and contemplation do not appear on this list as they are the words often associated with different types of prayer, but we have found that they are so vague they can be understood in many different ways and so we have used specific terms. Gazing is the first stage of contemplation and may be found under ‘non-verbal prayer’. Centering prayer (with it’s own heading) is often thought of as a modern form of contemplation. ‘Mindfulness’ is also closely related and has its own heading. ‘Meditation’ and ‘contemplation’ are often used almost interchangeably and the way the labels are used is not important (to my mind the most significant difference is that meditation is more ‘active’ or at least deliberate, whereas contemplation is more passive).
- We offer links to other sites that provide helpful suggestions and suggest various books. Just to be clear, none of us has any financial interest in any of these suggestions! Nor are we saying we necessarily agree with all they offer. It is always your responsibility to consider how God is calling you to Himself.
- Nothing is ‘right’ or better than anything else. There is no guilt or shame in not taking to a particular discipline. The only intention of the exercises is to draw us closer to God.