December 16, 2019
When Our Feet Face Fear
“He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.” Psalm 91:4 (NIV)
I wasn’t familiar with prayer walks, but somehow I knew they were something I needed to do.
My daughter attends a school where a horrible event took place at the end of the school year. Thousands of people were impacted by this incredibly tragic situation last spring.
Sadly, we see these tragic stories played out across our news feeds regularly. Every day we leave our homes and enter places and spaces where we know we could encounter such unthinkable acts of evil.
Concern, worry and fear filled me as the calendar flipped the page to the week before school started again.
So, I had a choice: Sit with fear or put my feet to my faith, literally.
I choose the second option.
Texting my friend Wendy, a faithful prayer warrior and the mom of a student at the same school, I asked if she was up for a prayer walk across the school campus.
She was in and texted a few others to join us.
The Scriptures don’t specifically reference prayer walking, but 1 Thessalonians 5:17 instructs us to “pray without ceasing” (ESV). And in Joshua 6, we read about the Israelites walking around the city of Jericho seven times to see the city walls fall down so they could enter the promised land God had given them.
Based on that passage in Joshua and 1 Thessalonians 5:17, I can’t help but think there’s a connection between our feet and our faith.
In our easily distracted culture, prayer walks can become a tool that helps us fix our faith on one particular place. Whether at a school, neighborhood or community area, prayer walking can be a focused way to help us pray.
So on the Sunday night before school resumed after the horrible event, we made our way to the campus with our battle plan:
And … prayer.
We printed off Psalm 91 to use as our guide:
- We prayed for God’s place of refuge to feel real on that campus. (Psalm 91:2)
- We prayed for discernment, for eyes to see things that need to be seen. (Psalm 91:3)
- We prayed for God’s shield to be known. (Psalm 91:4)
- We prayed for peace over the anxiety the students and staff would feel as they returned to the campus. (Psalm 91:5-6)
- We prayed those who would call upon the name of the Lord for protection would experience it. (Psalm 91:14-16)
After our feet had faithfully stepped across most of the campus, our group stood in one final prayer circle. We held hands and declared one more time the protection of God over the vicinity.
Then the neatest thing happened.
As we said, Amen, one tiny, white feather floated into the center of our circle. It reminded me of our key verse today, Psalm 91:4, and an overwhelming sense of peace stirred inside me. “He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.” No matter what would come, we knew God was with us.
What if today — during a lunch break, when walking the kids to the park, or while out running errands — we used that time as an opportunity for a prayer walk?
It’s free, quick and you don’t even need anyone with you. Just pick an area you feel led to pray over and head that way. You can find a few verses to pray, or use Psalm 91 as your guide.
As your feet press the ground and your prayers go up, declare God’s promises will come down on this very broken world. Speak the name of Jesus again and again. Read Scripture. And believe there is a security and hope in seeking His presence where evil has tried to prevail.
It’s not a guarantee nothing bad will ever happen there again, but it’s a confidence in knowing our God is watching over that area, and He hears our prayers. We might never see on this side of eternity what our prayers do, but they are doing something. Don’t stop praying.
Dear God, thank You for Your promise of protection. Help us call upon You whenever we feel unsafe or uneasy. Remind us to pray wherever we go. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” (ESV)
Washing dishes. Folding laundry. Grocery shopping. If God’s purpose for us is so great, why do our lives so often feel mundane? Join us January 6 as we begin an adventure through Ezekiel with our next study, God Has Not Forgotten. We’ll uncover a book centered on God’s glory, majesty and justice — and ultimately His love for His people. Click here for more.
Visit Nicki’s website to get a free printable with specific prayers of protection you can print off and keep with you wherever you go.
REFLECT AND RESPOND:
What would it look like for you to do a prayer walk? Who could you invite to join you, or would you want to do it alone? Where would you want to pray? Leave a comment, and share what this experience would be like for you.
© 2019 by Nicki Koziarz. All rights reserved.