Most people think there are only two ways to pray. The first one is to pray in private when you get lost in your world and personally connect with God. For some, prayer is done better when you do it with others. This is often called communal praying. For most people, they enjoy praying with their loved ones and church mates through a structured prayer.
People also do different acts of praying. Some prefer praying in simple, everyday language, while others use well-known prayers. For others, they pray with unprepared words, depending on their intent.
For instance, when people pray for something after hearing bad news, they usually utter words they formed themselves. They typically use a more heartfelt prayer to ask for help, so they can overcome their current situation. Since circumstances can vary, people use different words that will better suit the situation.
But for other situations, people prefer a structured prayer to guide them. This usually happens when praying with a group of people who have the same intent. The good news is, one quick research, and you can already find examples of prayers you can readily use, like prayers asking for forgiveness of sins, gratitude, petition, and repentance.
Can Art Be a Form of Prayer?
For artistic people, they can’t help but find beauty and art in virtually anything. This usually depends on their medium of choice. Some prefer the art of singing, dancing, painting, or writing, while other art forms like sculpture making, photography, and theater, to name a few.
Ways People Pray Through Art
The great thing about art is that it lets you express your emotions, project your feelings, and create something from nothing. This is the very reason why some consider art as their prayer. People have been using art to express their prayers for no one knows how long.
People have been singing songs of praises for many years now. One of the earliest songs of praise is Te Deum which was created in the year 387 CE.
Up to these days, we sing songs in the church or house of worship. Whenever we attend a mass, the choir will sing many songs and hymns appropriate for the occasion. Songs make it easy for people to worship since words are easier to memorize when sang.
One doesn’t have to travel far to find paintings of people praying, worshipping, and depicting scenes discussed in the Bible. With a quick research, you can find different paintings showing people in deep prayers and are inspired by different divine inspirations.
If one only takes time to learn more about paintings of worship, one will understand that it is more than just a simple art, but an art of prayer. Every icon is created painstakingly. The painter often tries to communicate the love of God with every stroke of the brush and drop of paint in the canvas.
There is this trend called Prayer Painting. It is the art of praying and meditating while creating art. One can join local prayer painting classes where an instructor facilitates the act of meditating and praying through painting.
For some people, photos or images are their media of choice. But they don’t only take photos or images of people praying, different churches and places of worship.
Prayer through photography can mean spending hours enjoying nature and snapping away photos to record the moment. This can involve taking photos of landscapes, animals in the wild, scenic views of untouched nature, etc. Every click of the camera can come with a mention of an “Amen” as a sign of gratitude for all the wonderful things God created.
Some people prefer writing down their prayers. They have a special journal only meant for connecting to your faith on a deeper and more personal level.
Prayer journaling is not like writing scriptures that are meant to teach other people. It is usually for the eyes of the writer only. You get to write down your praises, specific needs, ask guidance, protection, or blessings and pray for yourself, your loved ones and for all the people you know that badly need divine guidance.
Can Art Strengthen Your Faith?
Arts help people understand things better. It can be a tool people can use to strengthen their emotions and depict exactly how they feel, what they are thankful for, what their struggles are, etc. Art helps us connect with good through things we can see, feel, hear, and sometimes, things we can taste and smell.
Art itself can be a response to one’s prayer. One does not need to be an artist to create art that is meaningful, purposeful, and beautiful. You can put your faith in everything you do, even in simple doodles, writings, and songs.
Prayer has no limits. You can pray while you paint, sing, dance, or take photos. You can pray while viewing, listening, and experiencing different kinds of art. All it takes is to keep an open mind to all the ways that God works.