Leeds Vineyard


Contemplation is a form of prayer that aims at "looking at", "gazing at", "being aware of" God. There are many different forms of contemplative prayer, including ones we have already looked at such as the Examen or Lectio Divina. This month we will be exploring a more imaginative way of using contemplative prayer. In John’s Gospel we have an opportunity to enter specific moments in Jesus’ life in contemplative prayer and allow the Holy Spirit to speak to us. This is an exercise of the imagination, not the intellect, allowing the spirit of God to help you imaginatively enter an event in the life of Christ as presented in the Gospels. 

Contemplation practice

  1. Take a moment to quiet yourself in God’s presence. Maybe close your eyes, ask God to take the words of scripture and, by the power of His spirit, make them God’s Word to you. 
  2. Slowly read the passage a few times. 
  3. Daydream on the situation presented in the story. Then, as if you were a spectator, observe the events as they unfold. Watch, listen and stay attentive to Christ. Don’t try to analyse the story or learn lessons from it. Just be present to Jesus and open to your own reactions. 
        What do you notice?

        What is the scene like – noisy, quiet, peaceful, full of tension and questions?

        How do you think the different characters in the passage are feeling or thinking?

        What do you notice about Jesus?

        How do you think you would respond in that situation?

You might want to journal your thoughts, or spend time in prayer thanking God for all He has shown you (he is always working – whether or not we are aware!)


A variety of contemplative exercises can be found here:

Further teaching can be found here: 

Taste and See: Adventuring into Prayer – Margaret Silf


This article has drawn on the contemplative exercise from ‘The Gift of Being Yourself’ by David Benner