Thinking through your own feelings about and experiences of prayer will help you lead this session. You may wish to ponder the following questions:
- What experience of prayer, if any, have you had?
- Do you believe in the power of prayer?
- Have you found prayer to be useful in your life?
- What do you believe about God in relationship to prayer?
- What do you believe it is most important to teach children about prayer?
After you have had a chance to think about your answers to the above questions, read through the description of the prayer bead exercise. Take some time to think about what your own prayer beads might represent. What is in your heart? What do you yearn for? What is your deepest wish for the Earth? What are you sorry for? What makes your heart sing with gratitude?
Once you have experienced your own thoughts and prayers, put them aside. Prepare to be with children whose experiences of prayer will range from frequent to infrequent, and whose thoughts and beliefs may vary tremendously. Your role as teacher is to meet the children where they are and introduce them respectfully to one of many spiritual tools.
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