Christians have been practicing walking in prayer labyrinths for nearly 1000 years. Unlike a maze, a prayer labyrinth is not a puzzle; there is only one way in, and one way out, and at the center there is an open space to stand, sit or kneel. People walk the labyrinth to pray or to meditate. For some it is a routine part of their spiritual discipline; others walk it when they are troubled or wrestling with a difficult decision.
Here are some guidelines to help you:
There is no right way to walk and pray the labyrinth.
As you enter, take a moment to breathe deeply and let go of distractions.
Consider taking off your shoes. The labyrinth is a place to pray and encounter God; it is holy ground.
Go at your own pace, whatever feels right to you. You might:
- Use the words of the Lord’s Prayer, a hymn, or breath prayer to meditate on.
- Pause at each curve to pray for someone or something specifically.
- Use the journey in to let go of things that distract you or pull you away from God.
- Offer up to God a problem or decision you are struggling with.
- Spend time in the center just resting in God’s care and presence or opening yourself to receive a word or answer from God.
- Use the journey out to thank God for help or comfort given, pray for others, or just feel re-energized for your day.
- Maintain silence. The labyrinth is a place to quietly be with God in the midst of your busy and noisy life.
- Share the road. You may find others using the labyrinth as well. Simply step to the side to allow others to pass you. Acknowledge each other in whatever way feels comfortable.
Children are welcome! Help your child understand that this is simply another way to pray, think about God, and talk to God. Kids love knowing they don’t have to be still to pray, and often enjoy a few minutes of quiet in their day.